Monotypi: © Maja Lisa Engelhardt / VISDA
PRISON POEMS - AN EVENING OF FREEDOM AND HOPE
Saturday 1st February is under the sign of freedom, light and hope. For the theme of INTERNAL & EXTERNAL FREEDOM we'll embark on a dramatic journey into the human mind when it is pushed to the utmost limits of faith and conviction. Starting with the world of poetry, this evening offers a concert program in which words and music merge into statements of longing, loneliness, existential awakening and hope for the future.
The evening starts with Sven-David Sandström's solo for horn LAMENTO IN LONTANO and is followed by Peter Gunnar Petersson's dark and soulful suite AFTONLAND. The lyrics to the suite are four poems by the Swedish Nobel laureate Pär Lagerkvist's collection of poems under the same name. Lagerkvist's existential poems and Petersson's composition will be performed by the Mogens Dahl Chamber Choir.
In collaboration with Mogens Dahl Chamber Choir and Copenhagen Light Festival, the evening continues with a Danish premiere of Lasse Thoresen's piece PRISON POEMS. The composition is written on the Iranian poet Mahvash Sabet's collection of poems of the same name.
In 2008, Mahvash Sabet was arrested in her native Iran, solely due to the fact that she is a member of the Bahá'í religious minority. Two years later, she was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Whilst trapped in one of Iran's toughest prisons, Sabet wrote poems on napkins and toilet paper. With the help of friends the poems were smuggled out, edited, translated from Persian and published as Prison Poems.
These are powerful poems that reflect on desperation, hope and loneliness but at the same time reveal how a person, despite adversity, can grow strong in both faith and spirit - and it is this particular point of tension which inspired Lasse Thoresen to write his musical edition of PRISON POEMS.
In the evening, Actress Karen-Lise Mynster will recite Sabat's poems translated into Danish.
A TALK ABOUT PRISON POEMS AND PRESENTATION OF THE DANISH TRANSLATION
Before the concert there will be the opportunity to participate in a talk on PRISON POEMS. The moderator and participants will be published on an ongoing basis. The Danish translation of Prison poems will be presented at this event for purchase. After the talk, we will then walk together to the concert in Christians Kirke.
"The shriek of birds at dawn confirms
that it's long since nightingales sang in this garden.
But though we say nothing, our silence affirms
That we weep for the violets hidden among these thorns."
Mahvash Sabet, Prison Poems (2013)