Photo Credit Elly Lucas Photography
“Spell Songs is a work of vision and brilliance…” fRoots *****
“rapturously received” BBC Music Magazine *****
“complex and beautiful and an absolute joy from start to finish” RnR *****
***** Financial Times
“exquisite musical re-imaginings and settings” Songlines ****
“beguiling” The Sunday Times****
“a delightful homage to nature” The Times****
“A brave and magical creation” The Observer
2019 saw The Lost Words: Spell Songs, a musical companion piece to The Lost Words: A Spell Book by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris enjoy standing ovations at sell-out performances in major venues across the UK. Spell Songs was a highlight of The Hay International Literary Festival in May, and in August they were invited to perform at the BBC’s Lost Words Prom in the Royal Albert Hall.
“… one of the most sublime evenings you will ever enjoy. The magic of these superstars onstage – the art, the music, the sheer, ravishing beauty of the language… one of the greatest concerts we’ve ever had at Hay. Long, rapturous standing ovation. People weeping for joy”
Peter Florence, Festival Director, Hay International Literary Festival
With 4 acclaimed Scottish musicians forming part of the Spell Songs supergroup, there has long been a desire for Spell Songs to visit Scotland, both from the musicians and their many fans, who will be delighted that the Spring tour is opening at the iconic Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow on Tuesday 14th April.
Tickets are available at www.thelostwords.org/live
There is great musical potential within the pages of The Lost Words book; with its poetic rhythms, imagined birdsong and resonating watercolours. Recognising this Folk by the Oak eagerly commissioned Spell Songs. They invited eight remarkable musicians whose music engages deeply with landscape and nature, to respond to the creatures, art and language of The Lost Words. Scottish musicians Karine Polwart, Julie Fowlis, Kris Drever and Rachel Newton join Seckou Keita, Kerry Andrew (not appearing at the 2020 shows), Beth Porter and Jim Molyneux to sing nature back to life through the power of music, poetry, art and magic.
“Undoubtedly one of [The Lost Words] most thrilling transformations has been into the music [of Spell Songs] brought about by the vision and brilliance of eight musicians, who have together taken The Lost Words and turned it into something diverse, hopeful, moving and new” – Robert Macfarlane
The Spell Songs performances are woven through with original artwork by Jackie Morris (winner of the 2019 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal and Shadower’s Choice Awards for The Lost Words) who lived and breathed the music with the musicians. With her visionary artistic skill, Jackie will also be painting live at each venue, conjuring creatures using inks and poetry.
Spell Songs is a performance rich in spoken voice, whispers, accents, dialects, native languages, proverbs, sayings, birdsong, river chatter and insect hum, alongside beguiling music, poetry and visual beauty.
Pre-show Author Talk
Lost Words author and artist Jackie Morris and award-winning musician, author and Spell Singer Karine Polwart will begin the evening with an enlightening talk on the origins, ethos and enduring influence of The Lost Words book.