An opera/cabaret based on the life story of Poet Elizabeth Bishop
What do you do if you are a person who keeps losing things? Well, you could become very good at it, and write a poem so the rest of us can profit from your experiences…
By the time poet Elizabeth Bishop was 5 years old, she had already lost her father, her mother, and any sense of belonging to anyone or anywhere. Over a lifetime of travel, adventure, writing, loving, and…drinking she managed to gain and lose lovers, houses, even entire continents. In the process she gave us a collection poetic masterpieces, including her famous villanelle, One Art, an ode to the ‘art of losing.’
In One Art, soprano Laure Meloy, composer Paula M. Kimper, and cabaret artist Brigitte Baden-Rennie have used Bishop’s poetry, correspondence, and life story to create an intimate and moving monodrama. Kimper has set One Art, along with other Bishop poems, into unaccompanied art songs, which Meloy and Baden-Rennie have framed with selections from Bishop’s copious letter-writing to create a portrait of Bishop’s life that is in turns sad, funny, inspiring, and reminds us all that great works of art are often wrestled from great loss and heartbreak.
‘Tremendously powerful depiction of a rich and sad life…beautifully presented.’ | ‘Utterly compelling.’ | ‘Spellbinding…It was a privilege to be there.’ | ‘So well put together, and Paula’s music fits the poems to a T.’ | ‘A truly moving and unique show.’ | ‘Something quite different – a lovely mix of story-telling, the spoken word and opera.’
Laure Meloy is on the 2017/2018 Metropolitan Opera House roster, and her CD One Art recently won the Hawai’i Public Radio International Art Song Contest. In the UK, she has performed with the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Welsh National Opera, and English National Opera. In 2014 she launched Femme Lunatique Productions, to celebrate and promote the work of women composers. ONE ART is the company’s first project, both a CD recording and an opera/cabaret, co-written by Ms. Meloy and cabaret artist Brigitte Baden-Rennie, about the life and work of poet Elizabeth Bishop, with original music by American opera composer Paula M. Kimper.
Elizabeth Bishop‘s poem One Art is a tribute to the inevitability of loss, and the need for art to transform loss into meaning. Hailed as one of the greatest poets of the twentieth century, Bishop was Poet Laureate of the United States and a Pulitzer Prize winner. Her poetry shielded her private life, but a clearer picture emerges in her correspondence, detailing her struggles with love, poetry, and alcohol.
Paula M. Kimper‘s music was described as ‘Ravellian’ by the New York Times. Her operas have illuminated the stories of many unconventional women, from the pioneering lovers in Patience & Sarah to the trailblazing activist Sojourner Truth, and have been performed in the United States, the UK, and Macedonia.
In an artistic career spanning over 30 years, Brigitte Baden-Rennie has performed in cabaret, film, television, theatre, musicals, and concerts throughout the UK and Australia. Her cabaret performances have been awarded five stars by the Adelaide Fringe. Her production and directing credits include musical theatre projects in Australia, and festivals and events programming throughout the UK.
A light lunch will also be served.
Booking in advance only, numbers restricted to 45. This event is not included in the season ticket.
12 noon – 2pm
Welsh Quilts and Blankets
Jen’s obsession with quilts was triggered by those in her family’s home in Massachusetts but it was not until she arrived in Wales in 1971 that this obsession came into its own. Since that time she has bought and sold many hundreds of quilts while quietly assembling a collection she believes to be truly representative of the whole spectrum of Welsh quilting. Quilts from her collection have been exhibited widely in Wales, England, Scotland, Japan, France , Spain and the United States Most recently the collection was the antique guest exhibition at the large quilt show in Sitges, Spain, and featured at The Verona Textile Festival in Italy and in 2017 was the guest exhibition at Pour L’amour du Fil, Nantes France.
She has written three books; Welsh Quilts – A Towy Guide (pub. Towy Publishing: 1997, 2003) and Les Quilts Gallois / Welsh Quilts (pub. Quiltmania: 2005). Welsh Quilts The Expanded edition2016 published by Seren Books
She has also written for and been featured in numerous magazines. She lectures widely both here and in the United States and has frequently talked about Welsh quilts on television and radio.
Jen’s shop, across the courtyard from her home in Llanybydder, attracts visitors from around the world. An unspoiled, early eighteenth century cottage, it houses a tremendous selection of quilts and blankets.
Jens long time aim was to open a Centre of Excellence to celebrate Welsh quilting, a tradition that, alas, as a cottage industry, died out before the middle of the twentieth century.
At long last this ambition was realised. On July 31st 2009 The Jen Jones Welsh Quilt Centre Opened in the splendidly refurbished Lampeter Town Hall
The Current Exhibition at The Welsh Quilt Centre Lampeter is
The Welsh Quilt Centre
Exhibition 2018 March 10th to November 10th
A Panoply of Historic Welsh Quilts
In our tenth year we take a look back at all our previous exhibitions
Open Tuesday to Saturday 11-4.30 and some bank holidays
Welsh Samplers- Folk Art Of Wales?
2.30pm – 4pm
The Davies Sisters
A talk by Dr Jacqueline Jeynes
Dr. Jeynes will speak about the lives of the two sisters whose collection of Impressionist paintings is one of the glories of the National Museum of Wales. Where did their interest in art begin? What gave them such an appreciation of the impressionist painters at a time when they were often reviled by the art establishment? How did they afford to keep on buying so many beautiful paintings? The answers to all these questions and many more will be revealed in this fascinating talk.
The most significant collection of 19th /20th century art donated to Wales by the Davies Sisters
The Davies sisters, Gwendoline and Margaret, were the grandchildren of David Davies of Llandinam in mid-Wales, an industrialist who made his fortune through heavy industries of mining and transport. When their father Edward died at a young age, they each became a millionaire in her own right. From early on, they decided it must benefit as many people in Wales as possible.
Gwendoline and Margaret Davies had a considerable impact on the way 19th century ‘modern’ French art works were viewed by artists, critics and the art establishment in early 20th century Britain. Many British artists were introduced to the new approaches of the French avant garde artists through the collections of Gwendoline and Margaret. Augustus John was introduced to these works through contact with the Davies sisters, and Robert Blaney said Margaret “lit his enthusiasm for French Impressionists” as she let him lift a Monet from the wall and prop it outside on a bench at Gregynog to see it in “good light”!
There is a significant collection of prints that were donated to Aberystwyth University School of Art and National Library of Wales, and the major collection of paintings and sculptures can be seen at National Museum of Wales in Cardiff. This collection includes
- Several paintings by Monet, including images of London and Venice
- Rural scenes by Pissaro
- Sketches and paintings by Renoir
- Many works by Cezanne, including still life and landscapes and 2 watercolour/pencil sketches
- Paintings by Gwendoline John and Berthe Morisot
- Sculptures include bronze “dancers” figures by Degas and the famous Rodin sculpture “The Kiss”.
In 1917, Gwendoline and Margaret Davies endowed Aberystwyth University with funds to establish an Arts and Crafts Museum. When Gwendoline died in 1951, from leukaemia, her bequest to Cardiff was
- 78 oil paintings
- 26 drawings/ watercolours
- 5 sculptures.Biography Dr Jacqueline Jeynes – Author & Publisher – PhD MBA B.Ed.(Hons) B.A.(Hons)This bequest was said to “change the balance of power” amongst art galleries in Britain. Between 1934 and 1962, Margaret bought and sold works on a much-reduced scale than in earlier years of the 20is bequest was said to “change the balance of power” amongst art galleries in Britain. Between 1934 and 1962, Margaret bought and sold works on a much-reduced scale than in earlier years of the 20th century. Her bequest included 108 oil paintings, 42 prints/ sketches on paper and 1 sculpture.
- Biography Dr Jacqueline Jeynes – Author & Publisher – PhD MBA B.Ed.(Hons) B.A.(Hons
I did a full-time teaching degree (B.Ed(Hons) ) while the children were at school, and started my own Management Training Consultancy 1987. At the same time as training in companies, gaining an MBA and PhD, I was a distance learning tutor with the OCA for 20 years, completing a BA (Hons) in Creative Arts in 2011 based on creative writing, printmaking and textiles.
We moved to Wales 12 years ago, and I am writer/tutor on Aberystwyth University History of Art distance learning modules. I continue to write books on a range of non-fiction topics, receiving national Writer of the Year (non-fiction) award in 2015.
I write reviews wherever and whenever I travel (for Silver Travel Advisor) including hotels, restaurants and attractions – see my blogs and reviews – and provide workshops on Writing Non-Fiction
I have been married to Leslie for 35 years, have 5 sons plus 3 step-children, 24 grandchildren between us and 3 great-grandchildren. I love writing and long-distance walking, and don’t do much housework unless someone comes to stay!
also see www.silvertraveladvisor.com for my regular reports and reviews
4.30pm – 5.30pm
Songs of the Great War
Patricia Hammond & Matt Redmond
A concert to remember that it is 100 years ago that this “war to end all wars” finally drew to a close. Many old favourites will be performed such as Keep the Home Fires Burning, It’s a Long Way to Tipperary, Mademoiselle from Armentières, If You were the Only Girl in the World, Hello Who’s Your Lady Friend?, Goodbye-ee, Roses of Picardy and many more. These songs were often sung by the troops in the trenches to keep their spirits up.
Matt plays multiple instruments of the time, including a banjo that was at the Western Front, and Patricia sings songs from the Germans and the Pacifists as well as the Allies.
“We thought we were at the beginning of the last century!”
Musée Somme Albert, France
“Blessed with the voice of Ute Lemper and the looks of Cate Blanchett, Patricia has become a regular performer at First World War Centenial Events in Europe and America”. Jonathan Vernon, Western Front Association, October 2016
The years of the First World War were a turning-point for the nations of the world, and a turning-point in music as ragtime, art-song, folk, tin-pan-alley, parlour ballads, dance novelties, music-hall, palm court and marches jostled with each other to express what that world was feeling at the time.
With arranger and period-performance pioneer Matt Redman, Patricia has sought to give as authentic a voice to these feelings as possible. The repertoire has been painstakingly researched over years of sheet music collecting, and includes a lament from the poppy fields of Ypres, a Klezmer-tinged pacifist plea from New York, a drinking song from a German Destroyer, a jaunty French tribute to a lady of easy virtue, a piece of hot early jazz about women in the workplace, a heartfelt homage to the Red Cross Nurse, and a heart-rending song penned by a German composer in the trenches of Verdun only two months before his death. All this plus a rare performance of Pack Up Your Troubles with all of its verses, and the Soldiers’ favourite “If You Were the Only Girl in the World.”
Patricia Hammond is a UK-based mezzo-soprano with wide-ranging gifts. Her meltingly lyrical voice is as comfortable in her beloved nostalgic songs as it is singing the works of Bach and Handel.
Patricia’s beautifully reconstructed performances of Victorian, Edwardian, 1920s, 30s and 40s songs have charmed audiences around the world. With the crystalline simplicity of a solo harp, the unbridled playfulness of the Ragtime Parlour Band, or against the soaring grandeur of a symphony orchestra, Patricia’s vocal talents are equally at home.
Yorkshireman Matt Redman is a former guitar prodigy who trained
at Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester before acquiring his BMus (hons) at Trinity College of Music. He is a recorded arranger, music-director, composer and a performer in demand, specialising in
guitar and other plucked string instruments in numerous genres.
St Mary’s Church