Watch and listen to the conversations from Borealis 2021!

For the 2021 edition of Borealis we presenterd two conversations with composers who investigate queer history and culture and draws on personal anecdotes and life stories to create music, and researcers who expand the way we look at scores and concider the score as activism. Watch and listen to these beautiful conversation from this year’s festival moderated by Artistic Director of Borealis, Peter Meanwell.

From cockroach costumes to maternal tales, acrobatic accordionist Andreas Borregaard presented two new works written for him and his accordion during Borealis 2021. Commissioned from Brazilian composer Marcela Lucatelli and the British composer Philip Venables with collaborator Ted Huffman, the process of writing and preparing these pieces probed deep in to Andreas’ personal life and family history.

In this conversation for Borealis, the artists who composed for Andreas meet for the first time, and discuss their different creative strategies, the similarities and differences in how they work, and whether Andreas felt over-exposed in the process of making these pieces.

Andreas Borregaard could not attend Borealis in person due to Covid-19 related travel restrictions, hence the pieces were presented as part of Borealis’ Online programme on March 20 at 19.00 and was available 4 weeks after the festival had ended.

Closing Borealis 2021 was a new work for BIT20 Ensemble from composer Raven Chacon. From Fort Defiance, Navajo Nation, USA Chacon could not travel to be physically at the festival, but as an artist who straddles worlds of classical composition, improvisation and noise music, his new work could travel through the medium of the score. Taking many different forms, Chacon’s scores have appeared on flags, painted on buildings, as videos, and as roadside billboards, as well as on paper for musicians to play; and often communicate more than just musical material.

For Borealis, drawing on their research for 2019’s Soundings: An Exhibition in Five Parts that interrogated the question “How can a score be a call and tool for decolonization?”, Chacon was joined by Carcross/Tagish curator and writer Candice Hopkins and Professor Dylan Robinson, a xwélméxw artist and writer of Stó:lō descent, and the Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Arts at Queen’s University. Together they explored the idea of the score, not just as translation devices for sonic ideas but as organising tools and calls to action, visual signifiers and disruptive presences.

The conversations were supported by Fritt Ord Foundation, Vestland County Council and City of Bergen.

Hør også vår podkast Talking Experiments der du får et dypere innblikk i livet og virket til noen av komponistene og utøverne som bidro til Borealis 2021, inkludert Andreas Borregaard og Raven Chacon.

Presentert og produsert av Christiane Meldgaard for Borealis.