Present // Presennol

Jacob Whittaker

10 July // Gorffennaf – 25 August // Awst 2017

Bragu Blodeuwedd
A film about transformation

Gorse ~~ Meadowsweet ~~ Oak ~~ Broom

This short experimental work uses the flowers from the story of Blodeuwedd and follows their transformations through fermentation processes, evoking the spirit of Blodeuwedd through chemistry, colour and sound.

The work looks at brewing as a creative act, the recipe and process become a ritual, a conjouring.

Gorse, Oak and Meadowsweet wines blended in equal parts, add 3 drops of Broom infused spirit and place in a jar with a barn owl pellet.

The final infusion continues to change as the wines oxidise and the pellet breaks down.

Perhaps she is alive.

Ac yna y kymeryssant wy blodeu y deri, a blodeu y banadyl, a blodeu yr erwein, ac o’r rei hynny, asswynaw yr un uorwyn deccaf a thelediwaf a welas dyn eiroet. Acybedydyaw o’r bedyd a wneynt yna, a dodi Blodeued arnei.

Williams, Ivor, ed., Pedeir Keinc y Mabinogi, (Cardiff, University of Wales, 1951)

Jacob Whittaker

 

Bragu Blodeuwedd : Cerddoriaeth//music:

The soundtrack in the Bragu Blodeuwedd video was composed and performed by Deuair (Elsa Davies and Ceri Owen-Jones):

Description of Blodeuwedd from Llyfr Gwyn Rhydderch (c.1350, Parcrhydderch, Llangeitho) was entwined with chosen contemporaneous melodies (c.1320-80, Tyddewi diocese) whose words venerate female love and show honour with flower symbolism.

These words and tunes were included in an antiphonal made during the same period as the compiling of Llyfr Gwyn Rhydderch, intended for specific use in the Welsh liturgical calendar.

An arrangement of choral voices was transferred to Crwth, Telyn Wrachod, and Telyn Efydd, traditional instruments of poetic art in Wales with pre-Christian lineage.

The score was composed from these influences by playing with the shifting rhythms and tones of Jacob’s sound recordings of the brewing process and to his film images.

‘[…] blodeu y deri, a blodeu y banadyl a blodeu yr erwein.’
Flowers of Broom and Gorse. Mae telyn efydd yn canu ‘Sicut Lilium Inter Spinas’.

‘[…] nit oed gyueir arnei hi ny bei yn llawn oe garyat ef.’
Meadowsweet. Mae crwth yn canu ‘O Certe Precipuus Marie Magdalene Amor’.

‘Keisswn nineu ui a thi oc an hut an lledrith hudaw gwreic idaw ynteu or blodeu.’
Oak, strength and fuel. Mae telyn wrachod yn canu ‘Kaniad Yr Efail’, alaw o’r crynhoad cerddoriaeth canoloesol Cymreig.

Forged with magic and illusion, ‘Blodeuwedd’ appears while crwth enchants ‘Felix Maria Familiam Custodi’, ‘[…] hitheu a gymerth diruawr lywenyd yndi.’

Elsa Davies and Ceri Owen-Jones

Bragu Blodeuwedd was originally commissioned for Aberystwyth Storytelling Festival 2017.

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