ALLIGATOR SONG from POND
transcription of a Julian Grant opera fragment by YVAR MIKHASHOFF
Yvar Mikhashoff (1941-93) was a legend, a larger than life character, pianist and transcriber extraordinaire, who did me the great honour of dressing up a small and abandoned opera fragment when we were both involved at the Almeida Theatre in North London, at a time when there was a new music and new opera festival there. Yvar himself wrote a programme note:
'In the opera POND, there is an arioso about an alligator, perhaps even an imaginary alligator. I have extracted the material from this scene and taken it underwater - in a manner of speaking. This is what the alligator might sing, if asked; it is also what he perceives he hears from below in his watery domain: sounds, vaporous and liquid. My alligator only briefly shows his head to his human stewards. He prefers to hide himself and plunge, deeply, into his pond.'
He dedicated his transcription to a friend, appropriately named Stewart Pond.
First performed 18 July 1992 by Yvar Mikhashoff at the Almeida Festival, Almeida Theatre, London N1
SEE ALSO: the YVAR MIKHASHOFF page at the ESTATE PROJECT