The Angel Field Festival presents a double bill of new work:
Stilled Bones is based on North Wales’s seventh century abbess and martyr, Saint Winnifred, (Gwenfrewi in Welsh), told through contemporary storytelling blending Celtic song, Japanese butoh dance, Cuban percussion and electro acoustic composition. The title refers to the longstanding religious tradition of digging up and removing a Saint’s bones within contested landscapes in order to recover their symbolic significance and, often, to state territorial claims.
Developed by Liverpool based dancers Rachel Sweeney and Melisa Pasut in collaboration with Cuban singer and percussionist Guillermo Luis Horta Betancourt and musician Andre Leslie Hooker, the piece retells Saint Winnifred’s ancient and often contradictory story, interpreting ancient Celtic texts regarding her life and death and exploring fictional and factual texts that contest to the ancient struggles between human and spiritual practices, between religious power structures and historical writing, and between body-place relationships and their influence on the Welsh landscape.
I’m sat opposite my mother watching her as she sleeps slumped in the chair, hair unwashed, clothes unclean and a pained expression etched into her face. She was born on the day the Second World War broke out, September 3rd 1939. My Mum doesn’t remember her birthday anymore.
It’s too painful for him to think of her dying, fading out of his life each morning, each day, knowing that the little he has left of her is soon to be lost down a great big black hole that once was a place filled with memories. She now is a much smaller part of her own life, a life that was larger, stronger, and more important and that life still exists in our memories of her. We are stuck and she is stuck waiting for a memory to come calling…