St Albans musician joins dusk birdsong chorus in Highfield Park
- Credit: Archant
A professional St Albans musician has gone to the birds during the coronavirus lockdown - but not in the way you might think.
Violinist, violist and singer Una Palliser was booked to play at The Royal Albert Hall last week but with that performance cancelled and her other work on hold for the foreseeable future, she was desperate for an outlet for her music.
She decided to sneak into woods in Highfield Park at dusk to improvise with the amazing birdsong found there, and has been sharing her performances on social media, including one session which featured guest accompaniment by a local woodpecker.
Una explained: “When the lockdown happened I had been filling in as the on-stage solo violinist in Come From Away in the West End, was due to tour the UK, Ireland and France as lead violinist and singer with Blade Runner Live and had just recorded vocals for a film called Herself, which is directed by Phyllida Lloyd and was due to be released around now.
“As with most of my fellow musicians, every single booking I have had in the diary has been cancelled, with no mention of when our industry might be able to resume. It has been completely devastating.
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“I have been trying to think differently and find new ways of continuing to be a musician. Playing by myself has started to feel monotonous, and there is no way to play with others online without prerecording separately due to latency, so improvising and responding to the birds has been a surprising tonic. It has been wonderful to hear that others have found the same from watching my video.”
Trained at the Royal Academy of Music, Una now works across many diverse genres of music. She has performed all over the world, toured as the featured solo violinist with Shakira, Leona Lewis and composer AR Rahman, recorded with George Michael, Ariana Grande, Robbie Williams, sung with Elbow, and appeared on the scores of many films and TV series, including My Mother and Other Strangers and Redwater.
See facebook.com/unapallisermusic for more on her music.
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