Songs for Mukul (2021)
Commissioned by The Opera People
Poetry by Mukul Hossine (trans. Cyril Wong)
high voice, piano
Duration: 13' 30"
Songs For Mukul is cycle of three songs based on poetry from Md Mukul Hossine's poetry collection "Me Migrant" published by Ethos Books. Transliterated from the original Bengali text by Cyril Wong, these three poems explore themes of labour, fatigue, homesickness, love and a transient state of being.
I. I Possess No Address (5')
"Walking in streets without boundaries
How I lost myself I don’t know
I possess no address"
II. I Will Be A Firefly (3')
"I will be a firefly at your window
I will peer in
Look into your eyes
Lock gaze with my heart’s eyes"
III. Golden Mother (5' 30")
"Mother, o mother,
where are you?
I’m not myself anymore, mother,
come see how I live.
(...) Call me khoka, just once."
"In Chen Zhangyi’s ‘Songs For Mukul’, Moira Loh’s sustained notes ring pure and true in ‘I Possess No Address’, before she moves on to ‘I Will Be A Firefly’, allowing us to vividly imagine the scene of a single firefly going on a long journey, flitting around the space. By this time, she is fully in the zone as she ends off with ‘Golden Mother’, immersing us in the mood."
- Bakchormeeboy March 27, 2021