The Choice (2015)

The Choice is a piece about addiction. About the many faces of addiction; trying to keep the appearance of ‘ok’ as things disintegrate. About the experience of watching someone deal with it; about trying hard to hold on to a thread, but watching it always move out of reach. Terrible things and beautiful times and wonderful people sit side by side, and everything is so deeply felt. At times total chaos, at times despair.

And, you hope, sometimes peace.

This piece is dedicated to Pearse McKenna. It was written during a residency at the Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris, March 2015.

The Chinwag (2015)

The Chinwag is a piece for traditional Irish harp and live electronics, based around a conversation between three elderly ladies in a house in rural Donegal in 2012. Over tea and currant bread, they discuss funerals, the rose bushes, emigration, picking blackcurrants, and the secret to a long life. Composed and performed by Úna Monaghan, snippets of the ladies’ voices are manipulated live using pitch detection and motion sensor. The resultant sound is a merging of melodies and life stories – an impression of the chinwag rather than the privilege of the whole conversation.

The Chinwag was premiered at the Sound and Music Computing Conference 2015.