What right has anyone to change or interfere with another person’s art? Is it possible for something of the original to reside in this new thing that has been created? Can poetry be sung and if so, should it be? Whose voice is heard within this new art form?
Brilliant Mysteries is an event which is the consequence of a songwriter, Peter Wilson, spending time with the words of a poet, James Harpur. James will read and Peter will sing his translations.
The performance will last approximately 1hr and is followed by an opportunity for questions and discussion.
Peter Wilson has been making music under the name Duke Special for the last 20 years. He is curious about music, theatre, books, poetry, art, love, life, redemption, death, and 78 RPM records. As well as releasing numerous records and touring extensively, he has been involved in a diverse array of other projects, including writing the music for Deborah Warner’s critically acclaimed 2009 production of Mother Courage and Her Children at London’s National Theatre and being commissioned by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, to write a series of original songs based on their exhibition of the photographers Stieglitz, Steichen and Strand. In 2017 Peter recorded the record, Hallow which was inspired by the poetry of Michael Longley.
Other theatre credits include, Gulliver's Travels, Huckleberry Finn, Paperboy and Breadboy, all written with Andrew Doyle. Most recently, Peter has been working with writer, Bob Kelly, on a new musical adaptation of the Patrick McCabe novel, Breakfast on Pluto, which will premiere at the Galway Arts Festival as soon as live events become possible again.
Peter is a PhD student at Queens, Belfast, hosted by the School of Translation and the Heaney Centre. Brilliant Mysteries is the first of a number of case studies exploring the ethics, processes and nature of The Songwriter’s Version.
James Harpur has had six poetry collections published by Carcanet and Anvil Press and a book of translations (the poems of Boethius). He has won a number of awards for his poetry, including the UK National Poetry Competition. His books include The White Silhouette (2018) an Irish Times Book of the Year; and Angels and Harvesters (2012) a PBS Recommendation. www.jamesharpur.com
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