Tuesday, 29 October 2013

An Anatomie in Four Quarters: A Musical Perscpctive

Matthew Green, Orchestra and Special Projects Co-ordinator at Sinfonia Cymru, explains why An Anatomie in Four Quarters is such an exciting and unique opportunity for the musicians involved.

When I was first told about the Anatomy Season at Wales Millennium Centre I was extremely excited; it’s exactly the kind of project we at Sinfonia Cymru like to be involved with. We’re really interested in what makes a performance or concert so special, as well as exploring new spaces and opportunities for us as an orchestra. On a personal note, I’m really looking forward to seeing how the Donald Gordon Theatre will be ‘taken apart’ and opened up, offering an  experience unlike any other ‘typical’ performance.

At Sinfonia Cymru we are absolutely fascinated by, and constantly examining, the fairly standardised conventions of classical music. We think about what it means to be an orchestra, our close links to heritage music, concert traditions and rituals, the perceived implications of this and what these mean and could mean in the 21st century.


The way music and musicians are used in Anatomie in Four Quarters is enthralling. What’s asked of the musicians could be considered a little bit unusual, but I don’t want to give things away, so please excuse me for not being specific and for talking more generally about concepts here. For me, they’re only unusual because people have settled on what is ‘normal’ for an orchestra to do.  What Anatomie does is look at things differently, it teaches us and reminds us to dissect, deconstruct and analyse our bodies, our environments, activities and arts.

Already, through various meetings and discussions with Paul Clark (Artistic Director/Composer) and Tracy Gentles (Producer) at Clod Ensemble, I’ve been amazed at the scientific basis of the project. I love the potential of opening up academic discussion through art, and vice versa.  It’s really exciting to be a part of Anatomie; I know all the Sinfonia Cymru musicians involved will be taking away more than just an enjoyable performing experience, but a greater understanding of the constructions of performance and theatre as a whole.

Matthew Green, Sinfonia Cymru

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