Compass Presents to Showcase ‘The Drowning Shore’

By David Salazar

Compass Presents is set to showcase “The Drowning Shore,” a brand-new cantata for “mezzo-soprano in a screen.”

The work, which was written and composed by Alaistair White, is composed in Scots/Yiddish and will be performed by Clara Kanter. It will be directed by Hannah Lovell.

The 14-minute monodrama incorporates Sholem Asch’s 1918 play “God of Vengeance;” Asch is Kanter’s great-great-grandfather.

“In recent years, ‘God of Vengeance’s’ dichotomy between written and spoken language has been turned on its head,” White said of the piece in a press release. “The internet – a living, breathing text – seems to grow at the same rate as our concerns with other virtual lines – most cruelly, the national borders that claim so many lives. The post-Covid digitalization of work and performance has both accelerated this process, and, through that rapidity, thrown it into an uncanny new light. Are we horrified, or bored – that we now exist purely as avatars, in pools of watery light, like ghosts, or flowers pressed between glass panes?”

The work was commissioned by Compass Presents as part of the “Oracles in Sepia” series.