String Theory is an elegant scientific idea that explains how fundamental particles are different manifestations of one basic object: a string. String Theory is also the title of Kingston composer and violinist, Danielle Lennon’s new album, set to launch later this fall. This is an elegant collection of music that shows how beautiful, inspired art can manifest from the strings of a violin.
Classically trained and a member of the Kingston Symphony as well as at least two other musical collaborations (Calamity Janes, Hoppipolla), Lennon had been writing her own compositions for a few years until it dawned on her that she had the makings of an album.
“It’s an amalgamation of everything I know about music. It incorporates my classical training, my love for Celtic fiddle, and my affinity for dance and pop music,” says Lennon. She loves to perform other people’s music, but “this album was a chance [for me] to create my own music and express something me.”
Each piece has a special meaning to Lennon, crafted during unique times and distinct circumstances. Calm Before The Storm, for instance, was inspired by a beautiful summer day that turned dark and eerie. She recalls how she “sat outside and watched as a storm made its way over the Grand River.”
String Theory prominently features performances by Lennon as well as a diverse ensemble of Kingston-area musicians, whom she handpicked for the project, including: Lisa Draper (violin), Venetia Gauthier (violin), Jeff Hamacher (cello), Ashley Vanstone (piano) and Andy Love (percussion). Although classically-inspired, the album is produced by Matt Rogalsky, a renowned electro-accoustic composer, musicologist. “Matt was just right for this project and he was wonderful to work with. He has a diverse background and expert ear,” she says.
Lennon wanted to add a visual component to the album so she called on eight Kingston filmmakers to make a short film of one of the eight songs. They are Irina Skvortsova, Julia Krolik and Owen Fernley, Cameron Tomsett, Brent Nurse, Josh Lyon, Sebastian Back, Nelly Matorina, Melinda Richka. Their complimentary short films will provide original cinematic interpretations for each of the compositions; filmmakers have been granted maximum creative freedom to visually translate their respective pieces. The films will support Lennon’s live performances as well as the online release of the album.
Advance sales for String Theory begins on September 26. The album will be released on November 7, with a release party to be held at Queen’s University Club on November 14. Lennon also plans to hold a function at her hometown of Hamilton.
Posted by Arts Journalist Anita Jansman for The Kingston Arts Council.