Speak in the clearest of tongues. Each bow stroke a true arrow. Each thought crystallised and delineated. Each moment hand-finished, the larger shapes deliberate, concentrated, resolute. A rhetoric of illumination.
Star features three meditative string duos by Irish composers Benedict Schlepper-Connolly, Garrett Sholdice and Simon O’Connor. These three works, each composed specifically for the incomparable Baroque violin/double bass duo of Maya Homburger and Barry Guy, are a reminder of the value of concentration, quietude, and slowness.
Schlepper-Connolly’s title track evokes a pre-dawn revelation in West Cork. Sholdice makes a ritual from a tiny fragment of Bach in Sonate. And O’Connor remembers Medieval vocal music in Petryfyde Floures. It is, he writes, an attempt to reach a “place of contemplation, of beauty, of honesty, without manipulation…”
Recorded in a tiny, secluded parish church in Beltra, County Sligo, these recordings are full of the atmosphere of that countryside: fresh and spacious. A place where the music – and the musicians – could breath deeply.
“During their long stay in Ireland, Barry Guy and Maya Homburger developed a fruitful relationship with early music players like Malcolm Proud and Siobhan Armstrong. One of their disappointments was the paucity of such relationships with contemporary composers, Benjamin Dwyer being a notable exception. Now, on initiative of the composers behind Ergodos, another door has been opened. The encounter involves its own form of musical stretching, as these musicians who communicate an intense presence take on the music of Simon O’Connor, Garrett Sholdice and Benedict Schlepper-Connolly, composers who tend to work along the borders of silence and absence.” – Barra Ó Seaghdha
Star was recorded at Dromard Church, Sligo, Ireland in September 2010. It was mixed and mastered at Amplus, Aaigem, Belgium between December 2010 and March 2011.