2020 - creative doings and heArt-full collaborations
Here's a little about my activities of the past year and a celebration of the wonderful people I've had the chance to work with:
Sounds Physical - In January I launched this online course for dance and movement facilitators and therapists. I loved working with this group of movers, and really hope to repeat the course again in the future.
Voice Fear and the Sonic Environment
In January 2020 I presented research at the MARCH singing and mental health sandpit event at Snape Maltings. This was a really enjoyable and stimulating event - and we got to sing at a conference - in the dark days of January! Here's a collage I created for my presentation..thinking about inner landscapes..
The Heist Podcast from The Center for Public Integrity
I was delighted to be asked to compose the music for this podcast series about POWER in Trump's America. I learnt so much about US politics, and am in awe of the fastidious journalism from the team. The podcast was hosted by the brilliant Sally Herships, and I got to work with wonderful musician friends, Dawne Adams, Oli Langford and Danny Keane. Some of the music was recorded remotely, and some we recorded together on a very hot day in August.
Antenna - a new song by Poiesis released
In the first lockdown Danny Keane and I collaborated remotely and completed this track which we recorded in the Autumn of 2019. It's a song about our feeling body and our ability to sense others their presence and absence - the song took on new meaning in lockdown.
The Milk Way - on BBC Radio 3
In August BBC Radio 3 repeated this radiophonic poem. It is a collaboration with poet Samantha Wynne-Rhydderch, It brought back memories of the fun we had together when recording the piece in New Quay in Wales in 2018. The Milk Way is available to listen to on the BBC website.
UCL Culture Animation
I was so delighted to get the chance to work with Kate Anderson again this year. Do have a look at her work, it always cheers me up! Kate is an animator I first worked with about 18 years ago, when we collaborated for our Masters projects. We were commissioned to create a 3 minute film about UCL Culture.
I was delighted to be able to take part in the Help Musicians/Ivors Academy mentoring scheme pilot. Working with my mentee over the last few months has been so enriching, and I've loved meeting other music creators on the training sessions. I really hope this work will continue, and that a flourishing community of support is sustained during these difficult times - when the creative arts have been so deeply impacted. Pictured here is one of my favourite musical collaborators this year - the friendly robin who took up home in the garden - captured here in full voice.
During the Covid-19 lockdown verd de gris arts have been these exploring notions of connectivity: weaving together threads of creativity (both physically and virtually) with myself, poet Katie Atkinson and cellist Helen Thatcher.
The result, FIBRE, is an eloquent and moving soundpoem which captures something of the extraordinary times we have all been living through. Created over a period of 9 months of lockdown from recorded voice messages on their phones, it features the poetry, the musings, the voices of local women from a range of cultures and backgrounds in West Yorks as they move through the darkest of times under Covid, to the re-emergence of hope.
Fibre is funded by emergency grants from Arts Council England and The National Lottery Community Fund
In 2019 I left my part-time academic post at Bournemouth University, but I'm glad to say I haven't left academia altogether as I was made a visiting fellow at Bournemouth in the autumn of 2020. This enables me to be involved with the research community - and my research outputs will be submitted to the forthcoming REF. Here's what the Bournemouth coast looked like back in 2019!
Work in progress..
Towards the end of 2020 I was invited by Zoe Palmer and Jennifer Farmer to be a part of the very exciting Dream(ing) Field Lab commissioned by Season for Change (A UK-wide cultural programme inspiring urgent and inclusive action on climate change). I am thoroughly enjoying the work so far, and am really looking forward to this important project blossoming in 2021..
Currently I'm amidst producing a forthcoming arts documentary for BBC Radio 4 - to be aired in March 2021 - more on that soon..
I have so much gratitude for all the sustenance I've received from this work, and from the community of inspiring creative colleagues and friends who I have journeyed with through 2020.
A flower in the park back in March 2020.