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Taking a break from the usual Wordplay (which will return in 2020) we are sharing a different literary celebration this year built around the concert, workshops and installation of 365: Stories and Music, a major new collection of Scottish contemporary literature and music in one interactive sound-art installation, launched at the Edinburgh International Book Festival this year and touring to Mareel in November.
365: Stories and Music brings together the genius of Scottish poet and novelist James Robertson and Scottish fiddler and composer Aidan O’Rourke of Lau. James wrote a short story every day for a year, each story comprising 365 words, this was published in 2014 by Penguin as 365: Stories. Aidan then matched the challenge. He wrote a new tune every day for a year in response to James's stories.
I loved reading those stories: a daily dose of poetry and wisdom. And I loved the writing. The language is emotional, concise, apposite. Somehow the words and the pacing of the stories felt musical. I was intrigued by the discipline of setting such a quantifiable daily creative ritual. Would the same be possible in music…? (Aidan O’Rourke)
Aidan’s response is sparse and emotive contemporary folk music — the fiddle is paired with bold and exploratory harmonies from ECM recording artist Kit Downes on harmonium and piano.
This concert features Aidan and Kit performing music from the 365 Project alongside readings from James.