Magazine article Gramophone

'Minerva Scientifica'

Magazine article Gramophone

'Minerva Scientifica'

Article excerpt

'Minerva Scientifica'

'The Franklin Effect' Frances-Hoad Photo 51 FM Lynch DNA: Rosalind Franklin. Golden Hand. Minerva Scientifica Soundscape--I; II; III. Swallowtail Plowman K-Ras SJ Thompson Life Sequences (a) Whitley The Brain is Wider than the Sky. Theories of Quantum Mechanics Electric Voice Theatre with 3Ellen Solomon spkr First Hand (F) FHR51 (48' * DDD)

Rosalind Franklin (1920-58) was one of the 20th century's most important scientists but she was deprived of her moment in the spotlight due to the machinations of Nobel prize-winners Watson and Crick, who used her groundbreaking crystallographic imaging ('Photo 51') of the DNA double helix as the cornerstone of their research while denying Franklin any credit. A burning sense of injustice is a recurrent theme of this marvellous collection of 'motetta scientifica' [sic] by five female British composers (a shame no male colleagues were involved).

Electric Voice Theatre's wonderfully manicured sound, ultra-clear enunciation of the texts--many containing technical and distinctly unsingable terms like 'Geometrogenesis'--and marvellously dramatic delivery of texts and music are wholly winning, the four singers at times taking the roles of Franklin and the villainous Watson and Crick. …

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