Category Archives: A Robinson Crusoe of the Soul

A Robinson Crusoe of the Soul

The venue is booked, the edits complete. I’ve just completed the first full run through, so am beginning to think I may be able to pull this thing off. ‘A Robinson Crusoe of the Soul’ tries to follow the course of Arthur Machen’s creative journey, from south Wales to west London, from the son of an impoverished Welsh vicar, to the writer of weird fiction. To perform the original piece I would have needed at least six musicians. The reworked piece is just me, leaping about, triggering various samples, looping live noises. I play two parts: Arthur Machen and a lecturer who is trying to put Arthur’s life into some sort of context. Arthur gets to wear my grandfather’s old homburg and chews on a antique pipe. He reads a fascimile of the Times from the 1890s. At one point, he conjures a blatant anachronism, a Fender Telecaster, to create the live loops that depict the return of spring, of inspiration, the turning point in the drama, when Arthur realises what he wants to say has been something he’s known all his life.

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