Music with a message in mixed media show

Lola Perrin, appearing at Hebden Bridge Piano Festival 2015
Lola Perrin, appearing at Hebden Bridge Piano Festival 2015

In a new and exciting departure, the very imminent 2015 Hebden Bridge Piano Festival includes a whole concert of 21st century music which not only exploits the possibilities of mixed media with compositions featuring abstract film and pre-recorded voices, but also takes a strong eco-political stance.

Now You See It is a brand new major work which explores climate change and features the narratives of international activists and innovators at the frontline of climate justice.

“Such a brilliant idea!” was the reaction of environmentalist, author, Guardian journalist and recent visitor to Hebden Bridge George Monbiot, on hearing the piece.

All these intriguing and stimulating ideas emanate from the creative mind of USA-born pianist and composer Lola Perrin who has made her name with her captivating compositions which she has performed extensively around the world, including music for two, four and six pianos. She has published over sixty compositions, and a growing number of concert pianists and piano duos have performed her music in Brazil, the USA, and all over Europe.

Premiered last month at the Vortex in London, the main work in the concert is Now You See It written for solo piano and an orchestra of words.

It’s a new project that incorporates a voicescape made from the specially recorded spoken responses from environmental activists to questions designed to elicit inner meditations on cruelty, beauty, isolation, loss, overcoming difficulty and personal statement. Lola Perrin’s music has been described as “hauntingly compelling” in The Guardian, which is currently discussing integrating Now You See It piano and voice recordings into its climate-change podcasts.

To complete her programme, Lola will perform two of her Piano Suites. No.1: Early One Sunday Morning composed in 1992, was inspired by a painting by Edward Hopper, whilst No.3: Perpetual Motion which followed two years later, was written after observing children set free at the piano. Perpetual Motion is accompanied by silent film created by London-based video artists The Gray Circle.

“I get the distinct impression that Festival goers would like to see more contemporary music in the festival”, said director David Nelson. “It really doesn’t get much more up to date than Lola Perrin’s work, and I hope people will flock to see what will undoubtedly be a memorable and mesmerising performance. If there’s a clear mandate for this, the Festival will certainly consider commissioning new piano compositions for 2016 and beyond.”

Lola Perrin’s concert is on Saturday, April 18, at 4pm. Tickets for this and all other Festival concerts are available on line, by post and in person at Hebden Bridge Town Hall reception desk weekdays between 10am and 4.30pm right up to the Festival weekend. There is a quick link for on-line booking, a downloadable programme and booking form, and much more information about the recitals and performers at www.hebdenbridgepianofestival.com