somna m bulist l activity l list of works l collaboration l contact l deep listening study group - central pennsylvania l xarpe artist editions
THE WAKE UP
If I can imagine my sound is infinite, my presence is my dream.
The Observance of Meng Xiang (Dream City) was held on July 13th, 2014 in the lower lobby of the Experimental Media And Performing Arts Center, Troy NY presented by First Festival at the 2nd Annual International Conference on Deep Listening.
2013 Wave Dynamics For A Crowd Source
Prompt card artwork by Mary Spicher Fisher
First presented on July 12-14, 2013
as a poster presentation, ("Wave Dynamics For The Harp" was the original proposal)
for the Deep Listening Art/Science International Conference
EMPAC, Troy, New York
2004 The Shadow:To Conceal and Reveal, curated by Daniel Mack
Fragrance of the Blue Lotus was the Closing Ceremony of the multi-media exhibition, The Shadow:To Conceal and Reveal, December 5, 2004, at the Port of Call Gallery, Warwick, New York.
Performed on pedal harp with vocal recitations, involving random harmonic patterns via computer prompt and electronic processing with guitar effect pedals. The vocal invocations addressed the primordial aspects of hiddenness, infinity, darkness and water.
The duration was approximately 30 minutes.
link to The Shadow:to conceal and reveal, The Gallery at Port of Call, Warwick, NY.
"singed", garment created for the performance by Rhonda Parker Pegg.
photos by Adam Kurtz 2004
Valentine Stigmata at the 2001 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Valentine Stigmata at Women's Work Festival, June 2001, Pittsburgh.
Saturday, June 9, 2001
"The performance opens with a mini-opera, "Valentine Stigmata" (think Laurie Anderson, not Handel), played on electric harp with vocals by Mary Elise Grandelis. Its haunting tones fill the space, surrounding the audience. It made images flash through my mind from memories and dreams, and not all of them were pleasant." ~Anna Rosenstein, Pittsburgh Post Gazette
Somna M. Bulist and Friends return to the Philadelphia Fringe Festival with the world premier of Valentine Stigmata, a dark-wave opera by Somna M. Bulist and co-composer, Thom Parrott.
In her third Philadelphia Fringe Festival presentation, harpist Somna M. Bulist explores the notions of symbol and archetype with the strangely phosphorescent Valentine Stigmata. The three-part, dark-wave opera melds electro-acoustic harp, ethereal soprano vocals and electronic sound into a haunting journey fueled by music inspired by ceremonial Qabalist chant.
The ceremonial meditations of the Qabalistic Cross, Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram and the Middle Pillar are performed by Somna M Bulist, harp, and Lillian DeNile, vocals.
The Fringe phenomenon has grown to be an anticipated event in Philadelphia. Since beginning in 1997, the Fringe has tripled in size, and has attracted tremendous attention, support and community involvement. Local, national and international artists perform a full spectrum of colorful work that falls within, between and sometimes beyond the standard categories of theater, dance performance art, music, poetry and puppetry. Audience members jam into unusual performance spaces in Old City -an abandoned car, a warehouse, an upscale restaurant and a downtown home diner. They view unique performances, then stroll through galleries, enjoy street entertainers and patronize Old City's bars and restaurants. In 2000, the Fringe attracted over 32,000 attends Over 200 artists and companies performed more that 500 performances in over 35 venues, all within walking distance of each other. The 2001 Festival will take place August 31-September 15, 2001.
This will be the second year that Bulist will perform in an outdoor venue at the Fringe. Her situational work from 1999, 44 minutes on the flatine_A Cry for the Millenium, was presented in an alleyway on the day after a hurricane passed through the city. In her 1998 Fringe presentation of The FAERYE Invocations, Somna M. Bulist made her first public appearance, by candlelight.
This year Bulist includes a company of compatriots in the world premier of Valentine Stigmata. Returning to the Fringe for her second time is vocalist, Haley Alexandra Saba as, Lillian deNile, who made her Fringe debut as Lilly of the Valley in Bulist's 1999 performance of 44 minutes on the flatline_A Cry for the Millennium. Ms. Saba is the featured soprano on the Valentine Stigmata CD. The Celestial Deities are coming. Gene Fenton's papier mache creations depict the Chinese mythical Guardians of the Four Corners, the Blue Dragon of the East, White Tiger of the West, Red Phoenix of the South and the Black Tortoise of the North.
A preview of Valentine Stigmata was presented in Pittsburgh at the 2001 WOMEN'S WORK, "a festival of exciting new works by women". Elise Onlife aka Mary Grandelis was the vocalist for the WOMEN'S WORK performance. Bulist was one of fifteen local artists and two regional artists who presented a short performance of a new work.
Somna M. Bulist is exploring hypersigil personification in musical form as an electro-acoustic harp soloist. A Chinese-American denizen of Pennsylvania, Somna-nee WR Fong- is graduate of Pratt Institute, she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honors, and was awarded a Ford Foundation Scholarship, for her work in photography. Somna began and continued harp study with the renowned harpist and innovator, Lucile Lawrence, and completed coursework at the Mannes School of Music and the Delcroze School of Music, in New York City. Ms. Bulist, an advocate of the electro-acoustic harp, has embraced extended techniques and experiments in electronic processing and composes under her pseudonym, Somna M. Bulist. She made her first public appearance at the 1998 Philadelphia Fringe Festival, where she performed her original work for solo harp, The FAERYE Invocations, and in the same year, a selection of the pieces were released on her debut CD, Invocations FAERYE. She premiered her situational work in tribute to the millennium, 44 minutes on the flatline_A Cry for the Millennium, at the 1999 New York International Fringe Festival, a production of The Present Company. She is a member of The American Harp Society. Fans often ask Somna about the derivation of her pen name. "It comes from the word somnambulist which means dreamwalker. It represents a state of mind for which I have a special affinity."
Haley Alexandra Saba is a senior at Greensburg Salem High School where she has participated for four years in school musicals, one-act play competitions, vocal ensemble, and in the last year received the "Best Witness Award" at the Mock Trial State Competition. Miss Saba has also been performing in collaboration with Somna M. Bulist under the pseudonyms Lilly of the Valley and Lillian deNile. Lilly made her debut at the 1999 Philadelphia Fringe Festival and has since appeared at First Night Pittsburgh 2000 and LiveArt2000 at Metropol, as well as various private engagements. Saba has attended two six-week summer acting programs. The first in 1998 at The American Academy of Dramatic Arts, New York City campus and the latest in 2000 at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. She has studied voice privately for four years with Cheryl Shenefelt and has trained in piano in the Suzuki School of Music and privately with David Volker.
Gene Fenton is a fine artist working in papier mache. He lives in Indiana Pennsylvania and exhibits extensively in the Pittsburgh area. He is an award winning sculptor, receiving his BA in Sculpture and Printmaking from Indiana University of PA and his Masters of Sculpture from Long Island University in New York. Please take a moment to visit Gene Fenton's Web site at www.genefenton.com for the latest in his Scream Queen Series and many exhibits in the Pittsburgh area.
Live recordings from Valentine Stigmata at the Universal Life Healing Center, Irwin, Pennsylvania on March 10, 2002 with Cheryl Shenefelt Bush, soprano and Mary Grandelis, accordion, are available at Archive.org - see link above.
Women's Work Festival Press release
Pittsburgh Post Gazette Press review
44 minutes on the flatline_A Cry for the Millennium
1999 New York International Fringe Festival presents
44 minutes on the flatline_ A Cry for the Millennium, a solo instrumental soundscape performed by Somna M. Bulist on an electro-acoustic harp with guitar effect pedals. She combines original material, improvisation and ambient acoustics into an exploration of folkloric content.
Akasha, 1999, Somna M.Bulist.
The Wail, 1903, 'musically notated by Mr. James Butler, Lough Gur', heard during the burial of Thomas O'Connellan, the Irish bard and is attributed to the Celtic goddess, Aine.
The Archetype, 1843, notated by Mr. and Mrs. James Hall who proclaimed the tune, 'the archetype of the Keen'.
Lament for SARAELYE, 1998, SMB.
The Cry, 1867, heard in Central America by an anthropologist on the death of his father.
'Song of the Banshee by a Kerry Pishogue', 1888.
1999 Philadelphia Fringe Festival presents
44 minutes on the flatline__A Cry for the Millennium with special guest Haley Alexandra Saba as Lilly of the Valley in the "Song of the Banshee" :: Somna M. Bulist, harp.
The Faerye Invocations
The Faerye Invocations 1997-1998 solo pedal harp
Source material for the names and virtues of the maiden faerye is, To Summon the FAERYE by Katlyn, published in 1989 by Mermade Magickal Arts, P.O. Box 33-402, Long Beach, CA, 90801.
"These are but a few of the many beautiful names in the rich tradition of faerye... This is a tradition for women of a pure spirit, it is the essence of the Goddess in her maiden aspect."
ARALASSAE, the Wanderer, protects the traveler
Performance Highlights 1998:
First Performance, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Representations:Asian and Asian-American Women Artists at Brew House SPACE 101.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - Philadelphia Fringe Festival at the Zone One Gallery.
September 1999 First Performance, New York City - The Faery Tale Ball presented by Endless Night Productions at Mother.
photo booth self portraits 1998