juliana snapper


Song of Philomel (2015)

This monodrama (duration: 30 mn) was composed by Pieter Snapper for soprano, large chamber ensemble incorporating Turkish instruments, and live electronic processing —  designed in collaboration with Miller Puckette.

Its full world premiere performance took place 23 December 2015 at Borusan Müzik Evi, Istanbul, Turkey — featuring soprano Juliana Snapper and the Hezarfen Ensemble directed by Ivan Arion Karst.

The antique Ovid myth tells of two close sisters, Procne and Philomel. Pieter Snapper’s version is based on his own libretto, and presents the tale as Philomel’s inner monologue beginning with the time she arrives in Trakya to meet her sister and confront her rapist.

At the end as she is transformed into a bird, she gains the ability to sing again in ways that others may hear, and much like Milton Babbitt’s classic version, electronics represent her new found vocal abilities.

The composer explains :

 For me, all the best electroacoustic music of the last 45 years (Harvey, Manoury, et al.) worked according to the IRCAM model, whereby a composer who understands technology collaborates with a programmer who understands music.

Miller Puckette, author of MAX/MSP and Pd, was a dream collaborator, and allowed me to imagine processes beyond my own programming ability. 

Juliana Snapper performing Song of Philomel

The importance of stylists in vocal performance

 Designer Taylan Alkan created this amazing gown from scratch literally overnight this performance.

He measured me at the concert hall dress rehearsal and did final tailoring at my hotel room the next evening.

It is among my very favorites!!

Juliana Snapper’s verbatim