ANIMA Philip Venables

ANIMA cover
8 mins 30 secs

Sinfonietta/Chamber Orchestra

1 Flute, 1 Cor anglais, 1 Bass Clarinet (=B-flat Clarinet), 1 Bassoon (=Contrabassoon), 1 Horn in F, 1 Trumpet in B-flat, 1 Trombone, 1 Percussion, 1 Piano, 2 Violin, 1 Viola, 1 Violoncello, 1 Double bass

Purchasing options

Score ISMN 57036-087-1 £30.00 Buy now

14 players

Programme note

ANIMA came about from many different ideas, influences and inputs while it was being composed. The first were some striking photographic images by the Brazilian artist Fagner Bibiano, depicting faceless human forms in vulnerable, fearful or exposed poses in banal, surreal surroundings, often with their identifying features and faces obscured.

It is from this series of images that the piece gets its name. These images came to my attention through research for my first opera, which is currently being written with the librettist Ross Bowman. It too is an exploration, through an everyday family an absurd, surreal situation, of conflict, fear and vulnerability. You could say that this piece is a ‘prologue’ to the opera, although none of the music is actually the same.

Finally, I stole scraps of words from the Anima Christi catholic prayer, which apart from some reasonably visceral words, doesn’t have anything to do with the opera or Fagner’s images, but I liked them. Somehow they make a connection.

ANIMA was commissioned by Ensemble 10/10 (the contemporary music ensemble of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra) as part of their 10th anniversary season.

ANIMA was first performed in the Concert Room in St George’s Hall, Liverpool, on Wednesday 19th November 2008 by Ensemble 10/10, conducted by Clark Rundell.

Ensemble 10/10 cond. Clark Rundell, St George’s Hall, Liverpool, 19th November 2008
  • 21 Nov 2014 | 7:30pm | Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall, University of York | The Chimera Ensemble, conductor James Whittle