Ancient Horns and Trumpets in Pairs, Male and Female
Performer: Simon O Dwyer and John Kenny
Event Date: Fri, 9 May 2014
Venue: Mechanics Institute, Middle St
This presentation/performance explores the idea of pairs of horns representing male and female from the Bronze Age, Iron Age and Early Medieval periods in Ireland and Britain. Reproduction pairs of instruments will be discussed and played by Simon O'Dwyer and John Kenny with contributions from John Purser, and Peter Holmes. Recent experiments with horn pairs have shown that a great variety of sounds and rhythms may be achieved and enhanced when they are played together. The sum of the two parts is so much greater than the individuals. Was this phenomenon deliberately included into the original instrument designs? Does the practice of playing male and female together survive in any living musical traditions today?