Watch: 'Mixed Phrases' from Héloïse Werner and Lawrence Power

Friday, August 13, 2021

Lawrence Power's latest Lockdown Commissions explores the imagery of Arthur Rimbaud's ‘Illuminations’

Lawrence Power's compelling and beautifully-filmed series of Lockdown Commissions has continued with #8 - a work written and performed by Héloïse Werner titled Mixed Phrases, a setting of a text by Arthur Rimbaud for voice and viola. Below the video - filmed by Jessie Rodger in Asylum Peckham, with sound by Brett Cox - Werner explains what lies behind her work.

'As a French person living in the UK, I’m interested in the interplay between language and identity, especially in performance. Mixed Phrases draws on this dichotomy as it moves between two parallel worlds. In one instance, we find ourselves in a familiar world, right here on Earth, featuring the rich sound of the viola and words by Arthur Rimbaud (a section of "Phrases" from Les Illuminations). In the next, we are in a more unfamiliar place, somewhere higher in the sky, the ethereal violin lines becoming entangled in a new reconstructed language (Rimbaud’s words again but this time fragmented, internalised and reformed into a new language).'

Mixed Phrases was commissioned by the Viola Commissioning Circle. You can find the other commissions in the series at Lawrence Power's YouTube channel


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