Selection of Previously Directed Works

combattimento_image.png

Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda
Composition by Claudio Monteverdi

 In Claudio Monteverdi's Il Combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda, we are presented with the devastating story of Tancredi and Clorinda, who meet one another on the edges of the battlefield at dusk for a duel to death. The story is made tragic through the hubris that drives them to forego opportunities to reveal themselves to one another, ego denying the knowledge that would not only prevent Tancredi from unknowingly battling a woman, but the very woman with whom he has fallen in love. While the original story is pointedly historical -- crusades, Christianity, and conversion are main themes -- a broader lesson of (not) knowing the other is poignant. Indeed, Combattimentoasks important questions about who the "other" really is, drawing out the complicated and often double nature between friend and foe, neighbour and stranger, lover and enemy. Through the blindness caused by Tancredi and Clorinda's stubborness and myopia, we are witness to an unravelling of one's enemy as an unravelling of oneself, prompting us to reconsider some of the most urgent questions of our own fraught times about perspective, politics, and the place of pride. (Director's Note)

Direction by Sasha Amaya, Music Direction by Naomi Woo
Performed by Anna Wagner, Judith Lebiez, Rosie Middleton, Art Wangcharoensab
Trinity Chapel, Cambridge; Clare Chapel, Cambridge

 

A Certain Sense of Order
Collaborative creation by Catherine Kontz, Naomi Woo, and Sasha Amaya

A Certain Sense of Order is a work for two female singers exploring the American poet Anne Sexton. Using the text of a single poem—“For John, Who Begs Me Not to Inquire Further”—the piece reflects on Sexton’s life and work, including her practice of recording and listening to tapes of her therapy sessions. While reciting excerpts of the poem, the singers perform activities reminiscent of a variety of practices from Sexton’s life: writing at a typewriter, recording speech, listening to tapes. Transitioning between media, the singers manifest and mingle roles from the home and therapy room. Rather than a literal or biographical representation of the poet or her work, the piece is better understood as a performed poetic interpretation.

Direction Sasha Amaya / Concept Naomi Woo / Composition Catherine Kontz
Performed by Rosie Middleton and Sarah Parkins
Premiere performed by Rosie Middleton and Rebecca Cuddy
Tête à Tête: The Opera Festival, London; Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, London; Pembroke College, Oxford; Judith E. Wilson Studio, Cambridge; Polyphonic Poetry Festival, Cambridge; Cambridge Festival of Ideas, Cambridge; Le Théâtre du Centaure, Luxembourg

Laughter Studies
Composition by Louis d'Heudieres

Two people describe and imitate the everyday.

Direction by Sasha Amaya
Performance by Jillian Groening and Ian Mozdzen
aceartinc. gallery, Winnipeg

 

String Quartet  #1
Composition by Luke Nickel

String Quartet #1 is a 15-minute spoken-word performance that explores ideas of transcription, redaction, sound, and silence. The work's text is an unaltered transcription of a rehearsal by the Obsession String Quartet from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. String Quartet #1 was created in residence at the Arnolfini Gallery (Bristol, UK) as part of the event Sound, Silence, and Listening: An Afternoon with Christine Sun Kim.

Direction by Sasha Amaya
Performance by Delf Gravert, Jillian Groening, Ian Mozdzen, Natasha Torres-Garner
aceartinc. gallery, Winnipeg

 Photo: Anders Kjemtrup

Photo: Anders Kjemtrup

Actéon changé en biche
Composition by Marc-Antoine Charpentier

Acteon changé en biche was Marc-Antoine Charpentier's transformation of his own tragédie en musiqueActeon for leading female voice parts. It tells the story of Acteon, who espies Diana bathing in the afternoon during a hunting expedition. In revenge, Diana turns Acteon into a stag -- or, in Charpentier's second version, a doe -- to be hunted and killed by his own hounds and friends.

Direction by Sasha Amaya, Music Direction by Naomi Woo
Clare College Chapel, Cambridge
Produced with the support of the Clare College Music Society