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Recorder31 Day 17 | "Our Dear Forest" with Tabea Debus

Recorder31 Day 17 | "Our Dear Forest" with Tabea Debus

At the start of August, recorder player Tabea Debus and composer Robin Haigh brought together a brilliant immersive performance as part of the Dartington Summer School in Devon. For today's Recorder31 blog, they tell us more about the performance and the inspiration behind it...

Our Dear Forest

Tabea Debus writes: Those who have been to the Dartington Summer Festival as course participants, visitors or performers will know that there are some things that could only happen at Dartington! OUR DEAR FOREST was one such project: brainchild of composer Robin Haigh (winner of the 2017 BASCA British Composer Award for "In Feyre Foreste" for 5 recorders), it encompassed an immersive "soundscape" in the grounds of Dartington Estate. Similar to a visual exhibition, the audience were invited to explore an area of the Deer Park in their own time, whilst a group of 8 recorder players improvised for the duration of a 45 min performance. All players had completely different "recorder-backgrounds" - from complete beginner to an advanced level. Through various improvisation techniques we found lots of musical materials to guide us throughout the performance - from distanced, independent playing, to group improvisations, extended playing techniques, rhythmic patterns and harmonious melodies. 

"My aim with OUR DEAR FOREST was to create a space in which the audience, performers and tutors could be musically and mentally rejuvenated through the combination of recorders and a forest environment. There was no strict plan for what exactly would take place - only the idea that with the sessions we had been allotted, and with the people who had signed up to take part in this 45 min outdoor performance, we would explore approaches to playing recorders together in a way that would naturally develop and grow. Over the course of the project, I found that the participants of all ages and abilities very quickly melded into a supportive and musically adventurous group, wach with valuable and creative ideas that fed into the final performance in important ways. It was a real pleasure to finally experience this type of performance that I first dreamt up over 5 years ago - to walk through a forest in one's own time while recorders blend with the gentle sounds of nature."

- Robin Haigh, composer

See below to watch a short clip from the performance:



The Sound of Recorder Music!

Each day this month we're highlighting an audio clip of a recorder from our extensive range. Tomorrow we'll be moving our weekend showcase up in size to feature tenor recorders: here's the ever-popular Yamaha YRT304B tenor, a perfect and affordable entry-level instrument. Listen to the clips below or follow this link to find out more about this high-quality plastic alto recorder.

Morley Frog Galliard:

Dowland Lachrimae Pavane:


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