"All of us in Alarm Will Sound were immediately captivated by our first encounter with Alyssa Pyper's deeply felt music. That depth of feeling, and Alyssa's musical imagination and curiosity, have made this a profoundly satisfying collaboration for all of us. It's been so meaningful to be a part of this very personal journey with her, and to help bring this music into the world."
— Alan Pierson
Artistic director and conductor
Alarm Will Sound
Alyssa Pyper initially created Cradle as a solo work for violin, loop pedal and voice as part of a symbolic journey into the trauma of growing up queer, classically trained and Mormon. In equal part, the composition of the piece emerged through the composer’s dissonance with not only fundamentalist religion, but a pedagogy of classical violin dispersed through the frame of a perfectionist religious culture. Through a close mentorship, members of Alarm Will Sound co-created with Pyper a version of Cradle that allows for members of an ensemble to tap into its arc and participate in its call.
from the liner notes (Alyssa Pyper):
Written through your passage from Scotland to the Salt Lake Valley to join in the story of a Great American Prophet; Written to locate myself - I am your Gay Daughter, a Mormon Girl, too.
Written through my survival of the Church Headquarters’ Same Sex Exclusion Policy of 2015; an announcement that “same sex couples” bound in marriage are to be considered apostate, on grounds for excommunication - their children barred from baptism until age 18, upon the condition that they renounce their parents’ union -
When a mother is forced to choose between the child and the culture, there is something abhorrently cruel and unconsidered about that culture. A culture that requires harm to one’s soul in order to follow the culture’s proscriptions is a very sick culture indeed.
Written in response to the betrayal of a woman I got close to, a woman who was once my mentor; Written as testament to the tragedy of lines that got blurred, and the season of shame to follow because I thought it was my fault – an ugly duckling seeking home in all the wrong places – the ugly duckling goes from pillar to post trying to find a place to be at rest...One keeps knocking at the wrong doors even after one knows better.
Written through the holding of surrogate aunties like Marni, and Jenny, Wellsprings of Matriarchal Refuge – the remedy is in gaining mothering for one’s young internal mother. This is gained from actual women in the outer world who are older and wiser and preferably who have been tempered like steel; they are fire-hardened for having gone through what they have gone through. Regardless of the cost even now, their eyes see, their ears hear, their tongues speak, and they are kind.
Written to hold, see, hear, and speak for myself. Tell the truth about your wound, and then you will get a truthful picture of the remedy to apply to it.
Written to find passage into the next phase of my life and belonging.