Durant, Yati E.
The Soundarya Lahari or Saundaryalaharī (Sanskrit: सौन्दर्यलहरी) meaning "Waves Of Beauty" is a famous literary work in Sanskrit believed to be written by sage Pushpadanta and Adi Shankara. It was written in the 8th Century in present day Kerala, India. The Saundaryalaharī Project is research and compositional exploration based around the spiritual/graphic formation of the Sricakra that defines and arranges the verses from outside to inside. Each verse contains a poem in Sanskrit that establishes a spiritual/philosophical reference to the structure of the Sricakra. The poems are constructed as a hymn to Devi, as applied within Adi Shankara’s Advaita Vedanta monism, and refer to universal social and spiritual factors that affect many things, including the sources of creativity. Compositional elements and theories are derived from the Sricakra using serial compositional techniques, as well as narrative and style from the poems, to create a body of works. The Saundaryalaharī Project involves collaborative performance research, recordings, compositions and a collaborative website. The works are written for a variety of instrumental and electronic formations, with some of the later works utilising systems of interactive visuals using software and hardware which translates image into sound and back again – providing the opportunity for the performer to have a “feed forward” loop to regenerate musical materials within a composition. In between these processes are the acoustic instrumental sounds generated by an ensemble, and electronically manipulated sounds created by synthesizers and scored material. This PhD submission involves the following components: Development of a collaborative website portal: http://www.saundaryalahari.eca.ed.ac.uk Reflections: Duo Canon (2015) for two pianos/four hands [19’30”] – premiered by ensemble Brunialti/Biondi at Festival Nuovo Consonanza, Rome 26.11.2016 Saundaryalaharī 1 for two pianos/four hands, modular synthesizers and pixivisor audiovisual software [21’00”] – premiered by ensemble Brunialti/Biondi and Yati Durant in the Reid Concert Hall 07.06.2017 Pixidust 2 for two modular synthesizers and pixivisor audiovisual software [12’00”] – premiered by Yati Durant and Jules Rawlinson at Seeing Sound, Bath-Spa University 24.03.2018 Saundaryalaharī 2 for two cellos and modular synthesizers [11’00”] – premiered by Nicola Baroni, Norman Adams and Yati Durant at Festival Forfest International Festival of Contemporary Art with Spiritual Orientation, Kroměříž, Czech, 23.06.2018 The Saundaryalaharī Research Project – online research web portal with descriptions of works-in-progress, research, technology and performances between April 2020 and March 2021: http://www.yatidurant.com/saundaryalahari-blog Saundaryalaharī 3 v.1 for cello and audiovisual electronics [40’00”] – premiered by Nicola Baroni and Yati Durant at IMMSANE Zurich Congress 2020, Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK) 02.10.2020 Saundaryalaharī 3 v.2 (online) [6’00” and 7’00”] – premiered by Nicola Baroni and Yati Durant for online live interactive performance via Zoom between Italy and UK 12.03.2021 Saundaryalaharī Triangle [9’50”] for modular synthesizers and audiovisual electronics – published online 22.04.2021 Saundaryalaharī 4 for large orchestra and audiovisual electronics (score only) [approx. 36’] 2021 The Saundaryalaharī Players Guide webpage (http://www.yatidurant.com/saundaryalahari-a-players-guide) provides information about the philosophy, background, technical information, and approach to rehearsals related to performing the Saundaryalaharī 1 – 4 works.