Thursday, October 08, 2015

The Brontës' piano comes to life

Linger - Ailís Ní Ríain @ The Bronte Parsonage Museum from Ailís Ní Ríain on Vimeo.

Tomorrow the Irish composer Aílís Ní Ríain launches a fascinating new project at the home of the Brontë family in Haworth, Yorkshire. She has written six new pieces specifically for the literary siblings' own piano - the sound that might have lived alongside the creation of Emily's Wuthering Heights, Charlotte's Jane Eyre and Anne's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall.

Aílís and the Brontës' piano
The project, entitled Linger, has been recorded and its component pieces will be played in the various rooms of the Brontë Parsonage Museum, where they can be heard until 4 January. There'll also be a concept album based on The Tenant of Wildfell Hall.

Aílís, who was born in Cork and whose composition teachers included Nicola LeFanu, Kevin Malone and Adam Gorb, has lived in northern England for 20 years and is currently based near Haworth. She says:
The pieces are composed to 'lock into each other' when heard at a distance. In essence, Linger is a large work for six intertwining, contrapuntal voices which are separated into six rooms in the Brontë home. Elements of each piece will 'drift' or 'leak' out of each room forming a sonorous space all of its own on and near the stairwell. Visitors are invited to dwell in quiet contemplation and thought; to linger.”
The piano itself has undergone a three-year restoration process and Aílís says it is "beautiful".