Cristina Crespo releases her first solo album on 22 February and it’s a record with a truly personal source of inspiration. The 11-track album, entitled With You to the Threshold, was inspired by her own experience of losing her husband to cancer.
The self-produced album, which was three years in the making, captures the raw emotions of grief. Crespo’s music confronts the pain of loss through an acoustic combination of western classical and world instruments, together with evocative vocals. The album is charged with emotion and doesn’t shy away from dark undertones, but ultimately reflects light and hope.
On the day of the album’s release, York residents can also hear With You to the Threshold as a one of a kind sound installation in association with Riding Lights Theatre Company at the Friargate Theatre in York.
With You to The Threshold takes you on a journey of emotional discovery. With a combination of western classical instruments, world instruments, and poignant vocals, it will walk you through the barren landscape of loss, towards sanctuary, peace and light. The installation will guide visitors through the music of the album enabling them to reflect on the journey of grief. There will be grief charity representation and advice on site.
“This album brings visibility to the experience and the emotions of grief”, says Crespo, “it was born out of a desire to raise awareness and understanding, and to facilitate the release of those emotions. Music can reach places in our brains, hearts and souls that no other medium can, it also has the capacity to bring communities together in solidarity.”
Crespo wants her music to connect with others who may have also experienced bereavement or who may be close to those who have:
“With You to the Threshold was born out of a personal experience but it was always my intention to go beyond my own loss and to tap into the universal human experience of grief.”
“Music is all pervasive and touches something deep in you and makes you feel. The only real way to process grief is to feel it, and then let it go.”
One of the reasons Crespo wants the album to connect with people so deeply is to address what she calls the ‘grief illiteracy’ of our modern society. The up-front style of her music is her way of starting a conversation which she says is often absent in modern society:
“We have lost contact with death as a natural process and because of that there is a lot of fear around it. Grief is a big taboo and that’s very unhealthy. While I often talk about my experience, most people don’t. That means people can feel very isolated when they have experienced a bereavement and that can make a difficult period of your life even harder to deal with.”
As a multi-instrumentalist, Crespo naturally turned to music to express herself in her bereavement but she also felt a conviction that she needed to share what she had been through to try and help others in similar situations.
“I’ve never created anything like this album before but I’ve always felt that the job of artists in society is to delve deep down into the human experience and to create works about it.
With You to The Threshold is released on 22 February 2020 and will be available for download on Bandcamp. Tickets for the sound installation, also on 22 February, are £6 and can be purchased from ridinglights.org/friargate or by calling the Box Office on 01904 613000. Selection of times available. Booking essential.