Date

Dec 07 2021
Ongoing...

St Columba’s Women

7pm 7th December 2021

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A British Sign Language interpreted celebration of the life of St Columba
on the 1,500th Anniversary of his birth
through the sacred music of women composers
with special guest
Sandy NicDhòmhnaill Jones
Gaelic Crowned Bard 2019-2021

When St Columba (Colmcille) built his monastery on Iona in the 6th century, he banished all women (and cows, snakes and frogs!). He was however, unable to prevent women following in his footsteps eg:- the powerful Abbess, St Hilda of Whitby, learnt about Celtic monasticism from Bishop Aidan of Iona and 600 years later a nunnery was founded on the island itself.
In this unique event we weave music and story telling around the life story of this much mythologized saint, connecting him to the women in his life and after his death.

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Music includes:

Anon (14th C)  There is no rose of such virtue
Hildegard von Bingen (c.1098 –1179)  Ergo Femina
Rebecca Clarke (1886 – 1979) Ave Maria
Eliza Flower (1803 – 1846) Now Pray We for our Country
Helen Hopekirk (1856 – 1945) Slumber Song
Nicola Lefanu “Paradise” from “Rory’s Rounds”
Elizabeth Poston (1905 – 1987) Te lucis ante terminum; Jesus Christ the Apple Tree

An old stone wall with a window shaped opening showing the blue sky with a worn carving of a pregnant woman above, and black and white pictures of Iona Abbey and Celtic cross in the cornersWorld Premiere of music for choirs by Frances M Lynch
 setting 3 poems:
Birth and Belonging; Iona: Isle of Iona, O Lord, the Peace
of Iona;
Testament
Breith is Buntanas; Ì: Eilean Ì, O Thì, Sìth Eilean Ì; Tiomnadh
by Sandy NicDhòmhnaill Jones
from her recently published Colmcille/St Columba 1,500 collection
commissioned by the Royal Irish Academy,
with funding support from Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs:-

An Naomhsgeul as Buaine: Sgàthan Cinne-Daonna is Aiteal-Dhè
The Most Enduring Saint’s Fable: Mirror of Humanity and Glimpse of God

IMAGES:
TOP: Scottish Island Coast, Pixabay; ABOVE: a window in the ruined nunnery on Iona (note the image of a naked woman, a traditional pre-Christian symbol to ward off evil, just above the lintel): the Abbey; and Celtic cross, by Sandy NicDhomhnaill Jones.

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Performed by electric voice theatre:-

Frances M Lynch – Soprano, Artistic Director
Margaret Cameron – Mezzo
Samantha Houston – Mezzo
Julian Stocker – Tenor
Lauren Lister – BSL interpreter
Herbie Clarke – Production Manager
Anna Thomas – Zoom Facilitator

&

THE VOICES FOR THE FUTURE
VIRTUAL CHOIR

“Voices for the Future”  seeks to discover, honour, and promote female voices past and present and to inspire, guide and build diverse VOICES FOR THE FUTURE.

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