Busy bee

 

44_michael-x

This summer I have four composition projects on the go, I have never composed so much in my life! It is great but I can’t wait to have some down time (which means only thinking about one piece at a time… ) It has been a busy summer.

 

Fun with Cancer Patients

I have just completed work on a project commissioned by Fierce Festival called ‘Fun with Cancer Patients’. Lead (performance) artist is Brian Lobel:

Brian Lobel has drawn on his own experience of cancer treatment as a young adult to facilitate a series of ‘actions’ by Birmingham teenage cancer patients. These actions are self-initiated and designed to be of value to the teenagers themselves in processing their experience of cancer. These actions took place following a workshop process over the summer of 2013. The exhibition documents these activities, alongside reflections from medical professionals. “

I was invited to create ringtones using the ‘bing bong’ sounds from infusion pumps as stimulus. It was humbling to be part of the project as cancer is not alien to my family, plus I was excited about the projects’ ‘actions’, the young people’s processing of their experience of cancer”, hence my invitation to create ring tones.

I spent two afternoons walking round the teenage cancer units in Brum, asking patients if I could record their infusion pump machine and had a chat with them about the project. Brave, young people who were patient as I adjusted settings of my zoom recorder and politely asked for quiet. I was impressed by a nurse who kindly helped me find several infusion pump machines and we had fun triggering sounds at different points for quirky rhythmical effects:

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I have composed 3 ringtones in total. There will be a link to download them in the very near future.

Here is a snippet of ring tone 1; a cutesy vibe:

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I shall also be DJing for the Fierce festival launch at mac arts centre in September- where you can hear all three ringtones. Catch me on the turntables from 7pm.

 

Leeds Lieder Festival

I am also mid writing a lied for the Leeds Lieder Plus festival; it is inspired by polaris and themes in Octavia Butler‘s novel “Kindred”. Here is a snippet of the piano part (you can hear vocal part noodles in the background) I have written so far, all subject to change:

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It is for baritone and piano. Just need to find musicians to perform on the 12th October in Leeds. So far the piece starts quite bleakly, dark, murky, rapid passages with a sense of urgency, and over time the feel will be lighter, more hopeful, but only slightly.

 

 

33 Revolutions

I am collaborating with a visual artist and poet for an audio visual performance on Friday 6th September. I have arranged a series of samples and an outline for an improvised score. I will be assisted by Pram musicians Matt Eaton (guitar) and Laurence Hunt (drums).

I have had a great time sourcing audio for the music tech element, fusing together some weird and wonderful sounds.

Dance project
And finally, I will be commencing my dance score this week…. Phew!



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