Norfolk & Norwich Festival is to present The Language of Bells on 4th November 2021, a World Premiere from composer Jill Jarman, internationally renowned percussionist Dame Evelyn Glennie and the Chelys Consort of Viols. Exploring the sounds of the renaissance alongside contemporary music, the programme’s use of bells as the central focus underlines the timelessness of their importance. The concert is announced as a prelude, ahead of the Festival’s 17 day programme for 2022 which will run 13 – 29 May. Tickets to The Language of Bells go on sale to the public on Thursday 23rd September at 10am. It is a co-commission from Norfolk & Norwich Festival.
The ringing of bells has meant many things to people for centuries: the call to worship, a marking of time, an alarm for danger, the joy of marriage, the sorrow of death. Jill Jarman’s new piece for Evelyn Glennie with viols and voices mixes the sounds of old and new, life and death, celebration and mourning, and examines the call of bells pealing across centuries of human experience.
The World Premiere presentation of The Language of Bells includes new work from Jarman alongside a programme including C.F. Abel, Orlando Gibbons, Anthony Holborne and Michael East, and uses crystal balls, Chinese temple bells, wrist and ankle bells, resonant flower pots and traditional larger bells.
Evoking Eastern and Western influences, the show takes the audience on an episodic journey from the morning, through to dancing and a wedding as the day progresses. Later, the bell must ring out warnings, until ultimately a period of calm reflection follows. The simulated day ends in celebration, as it began.
The Festival is also running Norfolk Wonder this autumn, a trio of specially presented events inviting audiences to uncover something memorable in the county. These include Blast Theory’s widely acclaimed cycling audio tour Rider Spoke, three brand new artist-led walks in towns on the coast, and a spotlight on the workshops, demonstration and trails at Norfolk Open Studios. The Norfolk Wonder programme is a part of EXPERIENCE, a Norfolk County Council initiative designed to attract audiences to Norfolk for experiential tourism in the autumn and winter. More information here.