Music by Cecilia McDowall, Words by Christie Dickason
On tour with the choir in Vienna and Esterhazy, the first seeds of the Landscapes Project were sown. Sponsors Lin and Vince Adams, of Respect Organics, wanted to offer BSC something more permanent and also to celebrate the landscapes their business seeks to preserve. The project was launched with a new CD, Landscapes – music inspired by our organic heritage. November 2006 saw the culmination of the project - the world première of Five Seasons at Sherborne Abbey.
Cecilia McDowall and Christie Dickason write:
"Our brief was simply a 'Celebration of the Organic Landscape'. But how do you go about writing a piece about 'organic landscape'? There were no other prescriptions or rules, for either us or the farmers we visited. 'Is this what you want?' they asked. 'Is this it?' All we could say was 'YES! Everything is still possible. Everything is vital.' Our five, very different, residencies became a long, slow unfolding of generously given riches. We filled notebooks and cameras, and kept a joint journal. Our challenge: how to boil it all down into twenty minutes. Before starting, we had considered five movements, one for each farm, progressing through the arc of the seasons. Very soon, we found certain common themes cropping up. Our structure began to take early shape around these themes one afternoon as we sat in the warm sun beside Crab Tree Pool in Cumbria.
Though the two of us have worked together many times, the special collaborative nature of this project was unique. The farmers, with their huge early input, became part of the creative team. They gave us the crucial detail we needed to let their voices come through."
Becklands Farm, Whitchurch Canonicorum, Dorset • Woodlands Farm, Boston, Lincolnshire • Low Luckens Farm, Carlisle, Cumbria • Ardalanish Organic Farm, Isle of Mull • Blaen y Nant, Snowdonia, Wales
The poems are published as a booklet which is available at our concerts (for £3) or from BSC Box Office for £4 including P&P within UK while still available.