Aberystwyth harpist Eira Lynn Jones is flying the flag for Ceredigion in a new collaboration for harp and dance.

On Sunday, 17 March at 3pm will perform her composition, The Sunken Forest, with the multi-award winning dance group DanceSyndrome at Blackburn Empire Theatre.

The Sunken Forest was composed during a winter lockdown when Eira was asked to perform an online concert for the Edinburgh International Harp Festival.

Eira wanted to create a new work for solo harp and drew inspiration from the legend of Cantre’r Gwaelod: the land lost beneath the sea. Recently, remains of a sunken forest emerged on Borth beach, giving credence to the legend.

The piece also brings to attention climate change, and the rising ocean levels of today.

Eira’s dream in 2021 was that the piece would also include a narrator, dancers and film. Now, in 2024, that becomes a reality with this co-produced performance.

Eira said: “Working with DanceSyndrome has been a dream come true. Being able to take the harp and my music to a different kind of platform has been inspiring.

“The dedication, focus and enthusiasm that I have encountered from this group will stay with me for a long time. I felt included, seen and accepted as a musician, which is so valuable during this difficult time for the Arts. I am also proud to have created a work which highlights a medieval Welsh legend and links it to climate change, with rising ocean levels today”.

Eira regularly performs with the Hallé Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. She was Head of Harp at the Royal Northern College of Music for nearly 30 years and directed workshops in South Africa, Iceland, Greece, USA and Sweden.

A new chapter started for her as a result of the pandemic, and she now combines her performances and teaching with composing for harp.

She was chosen as composer for the Illumine Theatre’s audio drama Tremolo, now available on major podcasts in both Welsh and English.

Songs of Hope was written in gratitude to all the NHS workers and has been performed worldwide.

She has performed at the Hollywood Bowl, recording with the heavy metal band Venom and even appeared in two episodes of Coronation Street, watched by 16 million people.

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