“A One-person musical experience” – Fredy Clue brings something very fresh, and new to Edinburgh Tradfest 2023
📍 Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh
📅 2nd May 2023
🕖 Running time: 1 hour
👥 Featuring: Fredy Clue
👥 Hosted by: Douglas Robertson
🎂 Parental Discretion
🎭 Wheelchair Accessible Venue, Wheelchair Accessible Toilets, Audio Induction Loop
It’s truly tricky to begin to write this review. Indeed, Fredy Clue a persona/project of Swedish artist Fredy Samuel Lundh is indefinable by defition. Simultaneously an aspect of Fredy’s own personality, and a device to explore creativity in the non-binary space the artist has matured into, this is a multifaceted experience.
Their show at Edinburgh Tradfest 2023 blended autobiography and musical performance, what you might call a ‘coming of being’ story with musical interludes and a melodic finale. I won’t presume to tell Fredy’s story for them, but it’s an empowering tale of self discovery, one told simply and honestly and without recourse to an excess of theory.
Musically it proved a most singular experience. Fredy’s studio work is normally done in concert with other musicians, Fredy Samuel Lundh you see has a band. However this innovative creator wasn’t to let this stop them providing a full sonic experience. Through the power of sampling, looping, and I imagine, thorough sound-checking, the compact audience was able to experience a the true expanse of Fredy’s soundscapes.
Equipped with their trusty 16-stringed Nyckelharpa, and a compact keyboard, there was plenty of live performace however, not least thanks to their deep, and lilting voice. Essentially, Fredy Clue is a one-person musical experience. There’s an instinct for the magestic in the work, a need to express depth of emotion, in a matching depth of tonal landscape. They are also a magpie, gathering in songs from their life, songs from school, and beyond, but treating them with a transformational reverence.
Fredy is also a very charming presence, attired in the sweeping Bäckadräkten, a new non-binary folk dress made by project leader Fredy Samuel Lundh, textile designer Ida Bjors & The Textile Museum of Sweden. This personable enigma has plenty of stage presence, and a clear desire to share the experience and not only create it.
Accordingly the audience was summoned to song, facilitated through Fredy’s liberal use of non-verbal sounds, close to the Celtic mouth-music tradition. Fredy really is a creator of remarkable experiences, an true innovator in the folk art space. I am sure there’s another dynamic altogether when performing with band-mates, but there was more than enough on show to hope that this isn’t the last time Fredy Clue visits Edinburgh.