The Long Now
for bass trombone and electronics
Composed for James Littlewood
First performance: 4 Dec 2021
Performed at the ANAM Set Festival by
James Littlewood (bass trombone)
The ‘Long Now’ is a Foundation that aims to provide a counterpoint to today's accelerating culture by encouraging long-term thinking, fostering responsibility in the framework of the next 10,000 years. A short piece of text that opens the work, spoken by the composer, is a typical ‘Long Now’ provocation: “How Long is Now?” Music provides complex answers to this question, and in this work, a slow descent into very low sound, where pitch is either uncontrollable or almost inaudible, reflects the limits of human action in and perception of sound as it passes through time, highlighting that there may be other ways to listen, and other ways to experience our passing through time.
About the composer:
Cat Hope’s music is characterised by a focus on low frequency sound, extended forms and experimental timbres. Her music has been performed at festivals and broadcast internationally. She is a recipient of a Churchill Fellowship, and composer residencies at the Visby International Composers Centre, Sweden; Civitella Ranieri, Italy and the Peggy Glanville Hicks House in Sydney in 2014. Her first opera Speechless premiered at the Perth Festival in 2019, and won the 2020 APRA AMC Art Music Award for best new dramatic work, and her major orchestral commission from the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra will premiere in 2022 at the Tectonics Festival, Glasgow. Her music has been discussed in books such as Score Writing (Thor Magnusson, 2019) and Hidden Alliances (Schimmana, 2019), as well as periodicals such as Gramophone, Tempo, The Wire, Limelight, Corrie e Reverie and Neu Zeitschrift Fur Musik Shaft. She writes for dance, installation, visual art and poetry collaborating with artists such as Kate McMillan, Tracey Moffat, Ross Gibson, Martin Del Amo and Erin Coates, and directs the award-winning Decibel New Music Ensemble. Her monograph CD, Ephemeral Rivers, on Swiss label Hat [now] ART was awarded the German Critics Prize in 2017, and she has been named “one of Australia’s most exciting and individual creative voices.” (Gramophone UK, 2017). Cat is Professor of Music at Monash University.
More info: https://www.cathope.com/