Xenia - a 'pop up' opera by Nick Roth composed for the Bealtaine 2018 festival
Interviews and performance footage from Xenia, a ‘pop up’ opera by Nick Roth.
The work, which was performed in CMC’s outdoor courtyard space in May 2018, was commissioned as a Contemporary Music Centre event in partnership with Age & Opportunity for the Bealtaine festival – celebrating the arts and creativity as we age.
Xenia is an RSVP to an invitation by the Bealtaine Festival to consider the philosophical implications of Jacques Derrida’s concept “Of Hospitality”. The work, itself an invitation by Anne Dufourmantelle, explores the conditional as a necessity of the impossibility of the absolute – the shadow of the Other as light emerging from Night. Within it, I discovered that the French (l’hôte) and Greek (xenos) words for guest and host are contronyms – double-headed Janus words indicating sites for turbulence and conflict. An impermanent and transitory art like music knows much about the nomadic nature of our passage through time. Whilst this piece is just a child’s drawing in the sand, “Of Hospitality” itself leaves a trace in thought like motions of the wind.
Nick Roth, Composer, Librettist, Dramaturge
Siobhra Quinlan, Producer
Raeghnya Zutshi, Composer on CMC’s Emerging Composer Programme
Elizabeth Hilliard, soprano
Amy Ní Fhearraigh, soprano
Raymond Keane, narrator
Cora Venus Lunny, violinist
Izumi Kimura, pianist