About the project
Crossing Dartmoor is an experimental song cycle by composer Caitlin Rowley to texts created as artworks by the sculptor Richard Long. The work has its foundations in Rowley’s study of Long’s work and creative practice and as such takes a different approach to the traditional concept of a song cycle, including field recordings made on Dartmoor, text scores and imagery as well as conventionally notated songs.
The cycle is a work in progress. Begun as part of a research project for the composer’s Master of Fine Arts Creative Practice (Music) degree at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, it currently stands at about 45 minutes of material. However, the design of the work is flexible, allowing performers to choose their own ‘path’ through the material to create a ‘complete’ performance that may be anything from 5 minutes long to the full duration.
Pieces in the cycle address a number of themes, including sounds of place, geology, mapping the landscape, breath/wind and the movement of time
The current pieces in the cycle are:
|1979*||Movement of time, Mapping the landscape|
|2010*||Movement of time, Mapping the landscape|
|Entropy Stones||Movement of time, Mapping the landscape|
*1979 and 2010 are paired but may be programmed independently
|Windsong||Sounds of place|
|Contour Stones||Sounds of place, Geology|
|Drawing Out||Mapping the landscape|
|Wind||Sounds of place, Breath/wind|
|Crossing the Leat||Sounds of place|
|Ponies Eating Grass (2 versions)||Sounds of place|
|Wistman’s Wood Birds||Sounds of place|
|Scorhill Water||Sounds of place|
|Wind in Trees||Sounds of place, Breath/wind|
|Moorland Birds||Sounds of place, Breath/wind|
All the current video elements are silent and approximately 15 minutes long.
|Horizontal Branches (preview on YouTube)||Breath/wind, Movement of time|
|Blue Skies with Clouds (preview on YouTube)||Breath/wind, Movement of time|
|Sunbursts in Wistman’s Wood (preview on YouTube)||Breath/wind, Movement of time|
|Rock (preview on YouTube)||Geology, Movement of time|
|Grey Skies (preview on YouTube)||Breath/wind, Movement of time|
Crossing Dartmoor was commissioned by singer Simon Oliver Marsh, who grew up on Dartmoor and performs in the area regularly.