Harrison, Liu, Northern & Wolters: 'Aria Cuntata & the Low Miracles

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‘Aria Cuntata and the Low Miracles was a concert event that took place at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire in November 2021 to mark the 50th birthday of Michael Wolters. It was hosted by drag character ‘Aria Cuntata, whose name is made up of two Italian words: aria refers to a solo vocal piece with orchestral accompaniment, while cuntata is the past participle of the old Italian cuntare meaning to tell (a story). Michael Wolters performed as ‘Aria Cuntata, singing, lip-syncing and telling stories. The whole project was created around the theme of “fake news”, blending music and stories to explore our past and present through a queer lens while investigating gender, racial and socio-economic imbalance in our cultural history. A key aspect of the show was an exploration of more accessible performance formats for contemporary classical music. With a queer, holistic view, every performance element was contextualized to create an event that allowed access to those who might traditionally feel left out of art music concerts. Musically, Wolters looked back over some of his key ensemble works from a range of past projects and selected a number of pieces that he felt deserved another context and a new line-up. This new release contains new music and newly arranged music from the show written mostly by Wolters, but also including works from young composers Kunling Liu, Luke Harrison, Poor Northern (aka Paul Norman) and Difficult Listening. The music offers alternative cutting-edge takes on established musical genres to create an engaging and thought-provoking event.

Product Description:

  • Release Date: July 22, 2022

  • Catalog Number: BRC016

  • UPC: 5060644810156

  • Label: Birmingham Record Company

  • Number of Discs: 1

  • Period: Contemporary

  • Composer: Luke Harrison, Kunling Liu, Poor Northern, Michael Wolters

  • Conductor: Daniele Rosina; Barry Wordsworth

  • Orchestra/Ensemble: Thallein Ensemble, Difficult Listening

  • Performer: Suzie Purkis