Commissioned works of LYRA project to be presented at Insomnia festival

On September 20, the two commissioned works of the LYRA project – Latvian Animals and The Grinder – will be presented at Tromso, Norway’s Insomnia festival. LYRA is a project for kids and teens that is supported by the EEA Grants and Norway Grants funded by Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway. More info: https://www.insomniafestival.no/2022/info

The project title LYRA is a fusion of two words – the Norwegian word “lytte” (“to listen”) and the Latvian word “radīt” (“to create”). The result is LYRA – a reference to both the ancient musical instrument and the northern hemisphere constellation of stars.

Latvian Beasts

In Latvian Beasts, five stories for kids written by the contemporary Latvian writer Inese Zandere were told in audio and visual form. In the winter of 2022, composer Linda Leimane was in an apartment where by chance she discovered this captivatingly designed book for kids Latvian Beasts, whose concept was authored by the artist Mārtiņš Grauds. In the summer of 2022, inspired by the book’s texts and visuals, Linda Leimane and Mārtiņš Grauds joined forces to work on a new joint work in a project named LYRA, recreating the book for the pleasure of kids with the help of audio rhythms and cinematographic sound effects, and enhancing the experience through live movement and games involving shadows. In 2009, not far from Madona, this unique book project was photographed with the help of a whole team of actors, costume artists, photographers and directors. This summer, Linda Leimane and Mārtiņš Grauds met deep in the forest by the River Ārona in order to capture the sounds described in the book and to create a joint work – a unique soundtrack for an audio-visual work for the LYRA concert project for kids. Musician and artist Sabine Moore joined the project by contributing animation.

The Grinder

The Grinder is an audiovisual concert by Jenny Berger Myhre and Annie Bielski, based on a Norwegian fairytale about two siblings, a trip to hell and back, and the devil’s magical grinder that can give you anything you want, as long as you know how to make it stop.
The fairytale was collected and published by the famous storytellers Asbjørnsen & Moe in 1852, and is a humorous take on why the sea is salty, as well as a friendly warning to be careful what you wish for. Created with a musical grinder of unpredictable synths and electronics, Jenny and Annie are passing the story on through experimental, rhythmical songs and foley art, together with 3D animated visuals rendered from painted, abstracted dioramas created by paper, fabric, aluminum and glass. The Grinder is an energetic concert that will hopefully be of pleasure to kids and adults of all ages.

LYRA receives grants in the amount of EUR 206,256.00 within the framework of the EEA Grants and Norway Grants funded by Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway. The project aims to introduce kids and teenagers to experimental music and to get them involved in its creation. As it is democratic and non-hierarchical in essence, experimental music gives trained and untrained kids the chance to take part in making music. Since the project crosses social and ethnic divides, it is also socially inclusive.
Total LYRA eligible costs: EUR 202,510.00, European Economic Area financial instrument programme Local Development, Poverty Reduction and Culture Cooperation support sum: 85% or EUR 85,000.00, of which:
European Economic Area financial instrument co-financing: 85% or EUR 175,317.60;
State Budget co-financing: 15% or EUR 30,938.40.

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