Commissioned by Opera North and the Royal Shakespeare Company, this haunting, dramatic piece for chamber group and voices weaves Gavin Bryars’ music through eight of Shakespeare's most meditative sonnets. The ensemble includes Bryars himself, tenor John Potter, American soprano Claron McFadden and cult Dublin singer-songwriter Gavin Friday. The selected poems focus on themes of time and memory, and each sonnet is spoken by Friday before Potter and McFadden sing Bryars’ setting, allowing for both close contemplation of Shakespeare’s words, and the uncovering of unexpected readings for them.
Opening the programme, The North Shore is “a kind of response to the Idea of North”, inspired by the coastline around Whitby where Bryars spent summers as a child.
“This was no reverential reading a la BBC Radio 4.... This was hard-edged, obsidian and impermeable. Friday imbued each reading with a barely concealed rage, railing against the ink black lies and hypocrisies of fate. Bryars’ musical setting shifted similarly in tone between light and dark, each part a masterclass in endless fragile possibility. It may be over a decade old, yet Nothing Like The Sun retains its capacity to warm and delight.” – The Culture Vulture.
Tickets: £8 Adults / £6 Senior Citizens / £4 Students, Unwaged & Registered Disabled.