Homeric shards for noh chant, bass flute, and percussion
The word “apoploys” in Greek means sailing forth. Apoploys II is the second in a family of works that relate to Odysseus’ sea voyages towards home. The text here comes from the eleventh Book of the Odyssey, also known as “Nekuia”: Odysseus departs from the island of Circe to visit the underworld in order to receive an oracle from Teiresias regarding his return home, to Ithaca. In this “journey of a different kind”, Odysseus encounters, among others, the spirit of his mother who had died while he was away in the siege of Troy. After the end of their conversation, he tries three times to clasp her ghost, but she disappears “like a shadow or a dream”. Apoploys II is a reenactment of this moment, a fantasy on the subject of absence.
In Apoploys II, as in many of my works, I search for the primordial voice. A voice deeply rooted in the body, a voice that utters our innermost emotions without the filter of stylization, as in Western opera. Like Iannis Xenakis, whose “Kassandra” was strongly influenced by Noh Theater, I found in Noh chant a sound whose depth, in my imagination, connects to the ethos of the Ancient Greek text.