History in Surround, Record Breaking and New Toys

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A new addition to my PA hire stock, Soundcraft Vi1. 

This year so far has been nothing if not varied. It started with stage managing the beautiful Mizmorim festival of Jewish chamber music in Basel, Switzerland (the Doric Quartet were a complete revelation). Moving straight on from that, I went in to touring a project reworking Broadside Ballads, a project I produced with Sound UK and the Bodleian Library Oxford and which featured Sam Lee, Lisa Knapp and Nathanieal Mann. Some fantastic audience and press responses mean we hope to take it out again in the future.

March saw audiograft Festival for what (I think!) is my 7th year of providing sound for this festival of experimental music. Each year gets better and better. Some highlights this year were Paul Whitty’s piece “somewhere and field” for his group [rout]. Tiny sounds from [rout] were amplified in 4 point surround alongside field recordings made in Netherexe, Devon. audiograft finished with Japanese sound artist Katsura Mouri literary breaking (vinyl) records whilst filling the Old Fire Station in Oxford with powerful drones, quite a contrast.

Threaded through the year have been preperations for Iain Chambers 19 point surround sound epic House of Sound, to be presented in the square of the Guildhall in London in September. Charting the sonic history of London with recorded speech, field recordings, music concrete and live performers Iain’s really managed to pack centuries of history into what will be a fascinating piece.

Coming up in the rest of the year I’ll be sound engineering some of the dates on the tour of the Nu Civilisation Orchestra jazz big band as they celebrate what would of been the 100th birthday year of 6 giants of jazz including Ella Fitzgerald and Tad Dameron, alongside school children mentored through their The Jazz Ticket programme.

Later in the year I’m looking forward to returning to mixing sound for outdoor large scale theatre producers Periplum and their version of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 in Hull.

Dotted around all this will be dates sound engineering Colin Riley’s In Place project as he explores regional cultural identity and dialect in England, Ireland and Wales. A similar theme continues with a tour providing sound engineering, PA and tour management for Sound UK as composer/ performer Kerry Andrews presents here new works around wild swimming in rural locations… can’t wait!

 

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