“So there I lie … between the fire of the rock and the fire of the sun, scree, soil and water, moss, grass, flower and tree, insect, bird and beast, wind, rain and snow – the total mountain.” — Nan Shepherd, The Living Mountain
How The Earth Must See Itself is a new short film project conceived and developed by Simone Kenyon and Lucy Cash. It is created in response to the Into The Mountain performances and takes inspiration from celebrated Scottish poet and writer Nan Shepherd and her book The Living Mountain.
Filmed on S16mm film, with a dreamlike voiceover by Shirley Henderson this sensuous film takes us on a journey into the ecologies of Glen Feshie inspired by Shepherd’s unique approach to being in the mountains. A cast of five dancers, an evocative polyvocal score and a natural soundscape echo the sounds of a living mountain with choreography and weathered images bringing the mountain’s life to screen.
A pioneer of women’s mountain-walking, Shepherd’s original poetic prose is born out of total immersion in the Cairngorms’ landscape. This visual companion piece, to both Shepherd’s The Living Mountain and Kenyon’s Into The Mountain, invites us to experience a meditative, visceral and poetic being with the mountain, its ecologies and the nature encountered.
How the Earth Must See Itself (A Thirling), a 12 minute short film, will receive a special screening at Scottish Sculpture Workshop in Lumsden, Aberdeenshire on Sunday 6 October 2019 as part of Live Life Aberdeenshire’s Across the Grain Festival, which celebrates local culture and language.
How the Earth Must See Itself, a five minute film created for online viewing, is available above and at National Theatre Scotland from Thursday 19 September 2019.
Into The Mountain is a project created by Simone Kenyon over the course of six years, developed in collaboration with women living and working within the communities in the Cairngorms. The project culminated in a place responsive performance presented within the Cairngorms mountain range in June 2019.
Performed by: The Into The Mountain company; Jo Hellier, Claricia Parinussa, Caroline Reagh, Keren Smail and Petra Söör. Into the Mountain Choir. Voiceover by: Shirley Henderson. Voice Over Text: Extracts from The Living Mountain by Nan Shepherd.
With thanks to Erlend Clouston and the literary estate of Nan Shepherd.
Created by Lucy Cash and Simone Kenyon.
Based on The Living Mountain by Nan Shepherd and Into The Mountain by Simone Kenyon.