A Manual for the Use of Wings

a manual for the use of wings FINAL2 ART 2017-01.png
a manual for the use of wings FINAL2 ART 2017-01.png

A Manual for the Use of Wings

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  • Instrumentation: unaccompanied voice
  • Duration: 5-7"
  • Text: Gilda Lyons

 

Through little-girl eyes, I remember paging through maps and instruction books like they were invitations to other worlds. Legends, lines transcribing a distance, assembly charts, and diagrams can create secret languages that reveal themselves in powerful ways.  A Manual for the Use of Wings extends from my fascination with cartography and instruction books, and reaches toward the notion of unspoken truths associated with the exploration of unassisted flight. The vocalist is directed through a series of sonic gestures utilizing sustained straight tones that bloom into vibrato, neighboring figures, glissandi, breath attacks, palm-to-chest body percussion, microtonal variation, audible breathing, and a host of other vocal sounds.  (S)he is provided with specific instructions on how to “allow wings to unfold naturally,” “explore movement,” “begin to experience lift,” “now, fly,” among other actions.  Composer and performer together work toward the deeply private language of personal flight.   —GL