Venables: Gender Agenda and 4.48 Psychosis in London

Venables: Gender Agenda and 4.48 Psychosis in London

The Gender Agenda at Queen Elizabeth Hall

On April 12, Philip Venables’ audience-interactive piece The Gender Agenda was premiered in the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London. Staged as a TV-gameshow with challenges and even commercials, the work explored contemporary gender issues and (in)equality. Venables’ “driving, humorously energetic music” (Van magazine) was performed by the London Sinfonietta under Jessica Cottis, while the charismatic “anti-drag” performer David Hoyle acted as the gameshow’s host. Following the German premiere in Frankfurt (Ensemble Modern), further performances will take place in Porto (Ensemble Remix) and Amsterdam (Asko Schoenberg Ensemble). Watch Philip Venables’ introduction to The Gender Agenda in the video below.

The Gender Agenda (2017)
For Gameshow Host, Choir, Ensemble; Audience
Duration: 45'
WP: 12.04.2018, London

Picture of The Gender Agenda by Philip Venables
Picture of The Gender Agenda by Philip Venables
World premiere of The Gender Agenda, London 2018

4.48 Psychosis at Royal Opera House

Philip Venables’ multiple award-winning adaptation of Sarah Kane’s 4.48 Psychosis has celebrated its revival in the Royal Opera House in April. Replenishing Kane’s play through music in a fusion of opera with spoken and projected text, Venables’s 4.48 Psychosis details the experience of clinical depression and the search for love and happiness. “On its first revival the piece and its performance seem, if anything, even stronger than before”, says “The bleakest despair, the numbness of self-hatred, even moments of the most painful humour, all find expression in Venables’ extraordinary accomplished and imaginative writing.” 

Dresden’s Semperoper will present the piece’s German premiere during its 2018-19 season – in Philip Venable’s revised version based on the German translation by Dresden poet and essayist Durs Grünbein.

4.48 Psychosis (2016) 
an opera in one act
Text: Sarah Kane
3 soprano, 3 mezzo-soprano / tape / alto flute + picc, 3 sax (all sop+bar), piano+synth with organ pedalboard, accordion, 2 percussion (solo roles, some playing from memory), vl+vla, 2 vla, bass.  (all amplified)
Duration: 90'
WP: 24.05.2016, London

Photos: Mark Allan