The Brilliant and the Dark is a limited edition 300 copy 12" to be released
Record Store Day documenting a live performance at the ICA on 2nd Dec
2010 in which Gaggle were invited by artists Eileen Simpson and Ben White
tore-interpret a 1969 cantata for women's voices.
The radically remixed cantata uses elements from "The Brilliant and the
Dark", a work for women's voices composed by Malcolm Williamson
and Ursula Vaughan Williams, and first performed by 1,000 women
volunteers at the Royal Albert Hall.
The libretto approaches history from the Middle Ages to WWII
through the eyes of women, via characters including witch-hunters,
embroiderers, crusaders' wives, plague stricken women, mourners and
war workers, transposed into a modern light by Gaggle including issues
such as the importance of Suffrage or International Women's Day, and
referencing issues such as militarized rape in the DRC.
The Brilliant and the Dark is released under a copyleft license -
generating a new resource available for the future reflected by the B-
side of the 12" containing samples from the performance for future
artists to manipulate as they see fit.
A video representing an element of the performance commissioned by
Simpson & White, made by a team headed by Daniel Wolfe is here:
Costumes reworked from original designs by Design duo SCHWANGE.
The performance at the ICA was sponsored by the Arts Council.