I arrived during Fiesta – which was quite honestly the most amazing way to walk into a new city. Spain was completely new to me and now I was being introduced to it through a whole village alive with music, beautiful food and friendly people. What a dream!
This was to begin my short summer residency where I had been given the time and space to compose music in the mountainside of Andratx – with the sounds of cicadas thick on the air while entirely raptured in a sense of peace. There was a lovely organised chaos to Sa Taronga which held an imprint… some elements of the previous artist’s work within its walls. An old orange orchid and chicken houses, the area had been really cleverly transformed into a hub for culture, performance and all things creative. It provided a wonderful centre for people to come together, converse and share some heat under the Mallorcan sun.
This was one of the first steps in a long pilgrimage of music writing and sketches for future written works. One of the most useful things that I did during this time was to create a daily rhythm, with the evenings dedicated to reflection of my work throughout that day. I would work on pivoting from the work I could achieve under the heat (40 degrees!!!) to the music I could form and compose in the cooling of the evenings. Everything was composition and, like I have known before / since, it was simply a new set of obstacles to face, understand and work with. During the day there was a little more flexibility, starting with a quick re-balance into the new day and moving quickly onto something outdoors before the heat became too much. It was such a wonderful experience and productive way to begin a longer period of travel.
I got to know some really wonderful artists at all stages of their career during this residency which was really inspiring at a stage of my work when I had so many questions of my own. At the end of my residency with Sa Taronja I gave a piano recital on the work that had been composed, in addition to a couple of older works, before celebrating the last evening and preparing for the next step of the pilgrimage I had set out on… there were so many questions, and rather than searching for concrete answers, I was beginning to find beauty and a certain joy in the process of unveiling new and more focused questions as previous ones were answered and put to rest. I will forever be grateful for the time and experiences during this residency.
Mallorca: June-July 2016