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Various Stages

Various Stages Festival 2020: The Passing of the Butterfly

The Passing of the Butterfly was supported by a research trip in Kenya this February. Gwyneth Herbert & Ogutu Muraya give us an insight how this journey has inspired the piece so far...

The coming together of two voices from different places - Ogutu Muraya, Kenyan writer and storyteller, and Gwyneth Herbert, British composer and musician. “The Passing of the Butterfly” (working title) is an interweaving of memories, narrative, songs, mythologies, field recordings, soundscapes, multiple languages and an original score that reveals the historical, fictional and emotional journeys of two people caught between two wars.

They share where they’ve come from, what brought them together, their discoveries so far and snapshots of their creative play. They invite you into their explorations of the relationship between occupation and sovereignty, planting and cutting, home and displacement, the real and the imaginary, the promise and deceit of “civilisation”. How do we acknowledge both responsibility and wounding, whilst finding a healing language, beyond the binary?

Gwyneth Herbert and Ogutu Muraya in conversation:

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