Conflict as an act of intimacy
Writtten and composed by women, Turbulence involves an all-female cast, consisting of a Mother (soprano), Daughter (actor), and the voices of a female pilot, flight announcer and baby. Set high in the sky in an airline passenger cabin, the opera plays out as a musical drama between the two main characters. The parallel monologues of the singing mother and her speaking daughter tilt, interweave, and collide; at times their articulations in the white-noise spectrum seem to be their only common language. This charged sonic environment includes the popping and rushing of an unreliable flight intercom system, an amplified transistor radio, a hand-luggage-sized synthesiser, and the haunting aria ‘For those who are near you are far away’, with its soaring opening line, ‘Sky as blue’.
From the end of May 2015, it will be possible to discover an online version of Turbulence, as filmed by Sydney-based artist Peter Humble. Turbulence was commissioned and first produced by Chamber Made Opera, as a living room opera in Northcote in 2013 (and recorded and broadcast on ABC Classic FM – it also later toured to regional Victoria). The film version has been created for the e-book LIGE, which will be released on 28 May 2015 by the Danish Ministry of Culture and Danish Ministry of Equality in collaboration with the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. LIGE celebrates the 100th anniversary of the achievement of female suffrage in Denmark, presenting projects by 20 artists whose work addresses the cultural politics of gender front-lines today in a variety of media.
‘Turbulence takes us on an intriguing flight’
‘The space is perfectly suited to the opera, or the opera to the space, revealing the incredible power of chamber opera to unite disparate environments through artistic aims’
‘From the boarding procedures to the meditative opening sequence, through turbulence to the shock ending, this artistic simulation of an early flight had much to offer’
The World Premiere season was presented in partnership with the New Music Network, as part of Melbourne Fringe.
2013: World Premiere Season, A private living room in Northcote (3 – 12 October)
2013: Macedon International Living Room Opera Weekend, A private living room in Mount Macedon (2 – 3 November)