_REMIX

 After Violence

Songs by baroque composer John Dowland, recomposed for synths, lute, voice and drag queen, formed the basis of this experimental theatre work created for performances at The National Trust’s Sutton House, Dulwich Picture Gallery and Royal Academy of Arts.

Made in collaboration with members of the LGBTQI+ community, new text and movement reframed the baroque so that After Violence celebrated contemporary, queer experiences.

Performed by Rhys’s Pieces (drag queen / dancer), Ella Taylor (soprano), Sam Brown (lute) and Benjamin Tassie (synths), After Violence was made possible using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.

Photo by Max Miechoswki

Photo by Max Miechoswki

 
 

 

22-T2AE8012.jpg
 

Taking the Dulwich Picture Gallery’s exhibition of the Spanish painter Jusepe Ribera (1591-1652) as its starting point, After Violence used movement, text and song to explore contemporary themes of gender, masculinity, and male violence from a uniquely queer perspective.

New text imagined the world within and beyond Ribera’s masterpiece ‘Apollo Flaying Marsyas’ whilst John Dowland’s lute songs, performed in new versions for synths and electronics, formed the emotional framework of the performance, celebrating strength, vulnerability and beauty in the face of violence.

 
 

 

46-T2AE8142.jpg
 
An Intense and beautiful performance
— Peter Conlan (Twitter)

After Violence was developed through collaborative workshops with members of the LGBTQI+ community. Generating text and movement, these workshops were a space in which to share perspectives and experiences, as well as reactions to the Ribera paintings on display at the Dulwich Picture Gallery.

Reframing the baroque artworks and music, After Violence therefore explored contemporary experiences, resonating with a range of queer identities.

“What is it like to live in a walled garden? And not to see the fruit that bends the tree with the weight of itself? Flowers have more life than brick, and roots with the strength to crack stone.” - from After Violence

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

 
 

The After Violence Team

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Rhys Hollis

Rhys Hollis (Rhys’s Pieces) is a drag performer. Rhys was winner of Lipsync 1000 and performs with The LipSinkers. Praised for his ‘high-octane queer exuberance of the first order’ (Time Out), Rhys also hosts the regular Queefy drag and cabaret night in Walthamstow.

instagram.com/rhysspieces_

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Ella Taylor

Ella Taylor is a soprano with a passion for performing contemporary music and works by women and gender non-conforming artists. They are a graduate of the Royal Academy of Music, where they gained Distinction in MA Performance, a DipRAM for an outstanding final recital, and the Charles Norman Prize.

ellataylorsoprano.co.uk

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Sam Brown

Sam Brown is a lutenist and classical guitarist. Sam has performed across Europe - including at Bolivar Hall, the House of Lords, Seville Guitar Festival, the Barbican Centre, and St Martin-in-the-Fields. He has performed at Shakespeare’s Globe and on the BBC.

sambrownmusic.org

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Photo by Dimitri Djuric

Benjamin Tassie

Benjamin Tassie is a composer and producer. His music has been performed on BBC Radio 3, Resonance FM, at Tate Modern, The Place, Kensington Palace, Wilderness Festival and elsewhere. He has written for choir in a disused factory and arrange pop songs for baroque orchestra.

benjamintassie.com