A performance of Lateral will take place on 25th April 2012 at 4.05 pm as part of the High-Slack-Low-Slack-High event for GI Festival on site in Dixon Street, Glasgow, and again on 28th April for the final event in the Clydeport Authority Headquarters at 5 pm and 7.30 pm. The live performers are Claire Docherty, Kirstie Edgar, Jessica King, Nichola Scrutton, Morag Stark and Hanna Tuulikki.
The events are free but booking is recommended for the Saturday 28th April event – contact email@example.com to book a place.
Originally created for High-Slack-Low-Slack-High – a suite of audio works relating to the Clyde River curated by Minty Donald for GI Festival of Visual Art – Lateral was made as a live, site-specific installation set in Dixon Street, Glasgow. Subsequent to that event I created a studio version of the work.
Dixon Street is a main thoroughfare that runs from the river directly up through the city’s main shopping artery. The aims of the work were to highlight a sense of disconnection from the river and to create multiple cross currents by merging the river sounds of Lateral and the sounds of the city environment. The work was projected over large horn speakers mounted in the street between two buildings, creating a view down to the river. Six vocalists added a further layer of human presence with their resonant tones both emerging out of and being subsumed by the undulating sound density of the site.
The starting point for the work was the idea of a ‘Lateral System’ – a system of navigational aids comprising shapes, colours and numbers, used to guide boats up river channels into ports and docks. However, the multiple resonances of the word ‘lateral’ took on greater significance in the work through the associations and digressions that emerge with the notion of a flowing river. Place names, numerical information from tidal charts and signal/radio sounds serve as signposts along the way, rooting the work in a real world place. But the perpetual flow of water and the periodic rhythms of a vocal landscape contribute to a sense of multiple spatial and historical resonances, and to ideas of flowing with and against the current.
Many thanks indeed to Claire Docherty, Kirstie Edgar, Jessica King, Morag Stark and Hanna Tuulikki for their live vocal contributions both on site at Dixon Street and at the closing event in the Clydeport Authority Headquarters.
Curated radio show Glasgow Soundscapes: WebSynRadio (France)
Curated listening hour at Brooklyn Acoustic Ecology Festival (US)
LOLG project Shona Island (Scotland)
(25 Feb – 2 March)
Here. now. where? Saout Radio, 5th Marrakech Biennale
(12 – 18 January)
Framework Radio broadcasts
12th london, uk ::: resonance 104.4fm
13th amsterdam, nl ::: concertzender
13th vancouver, us ::: radio nouspace
14th south devon, uk ::: soundartradio 102.5fm
14th maribor, si ::: radio marš 95.9fm
15th lisbon, pt ::: radio zero
15th vancouver, us ::: radio nouspace
16th coimbra, pt ::: rádio universidade de coimbra 107.9fm
16th lisbon, pt ::: radio zero
17th ljubljana, si ::: radio študent 89.3fm
17th brussels, be ::: radio campus 92.1fm
17th vancouver, us ::: radio nouspace
18th london, uk ::: resonance 104.4fm
18th new york state, us ::: wgxc 90.7fm
18th brasilía, br ::: rádio paisagem
Foldover, WOBC 91.5 fm, Ohio
Time/Zones, Akademie der Kunst, Berlin
AIR/EAR Installation, Radio-System, Argentine
High-Slack-Low-Slack-High, GI Festival, Dixon Street, Glasgow
High-Slack-Low-Slack-High, GI Festival, Clydeport HQ, Glasgow
Artists: John Cavanagh, Minty Donald/Nick Miller, Douglas Morland, Nichola Scrutton, Hanna Tuulikki
A group of artists with shared, but diverse, interests in sound, space and place – have created audio works to be performed in public spaces close to or on the River Clyde over five days during the Festival (Monday 23rd – Friday 27th April 2012). Each performance is timed to coincide with high tide. In these citywide performances, the natural cadences and flux of the river, once significant in the tempo of Glasgow life, will again leak into the urban fabric.
On Saturday 28th April, all five works will be performed in the Trust Hall of Clydeport Authority Headquarters, an opulent, circular, Edwardian boardroom overlooking the Clyde. Here, the sonic interpretations of the river’s tidal cycle will permeate a building that stands as symbol of Glasgow’s maritime heritage.
‘High-Slack-Low-Slack-High reflects on the functional and symbolic roles played by urban rivers in contemporary cities – and in particular, the role of the River Clyde in Glasgow today. It’s common belief that, following the decline of shipbuilding and other maritime industries, Glasgow turned its back on the River. Now, while the riverbanks are undergoing significant regeneration, the water itself remains a relatively dead space. Through interweaving the natural cadences of the tide with contemporary urban rhythms, High-Slack-Low-Slack-High is an invitation to re-imagine the relationship between river and city – beyond the legacy of Glasgow’s industrial and manufacturing past.’
Perpetually rising and falling yet constrained within manmade embankments, detached from the city that once saw it as symbolic of its industrial prowess, the tidal river is taken as an invitation to reflect on ideas of change and continuity, nature and culture, in relation to the contemporary, post-industrial city.
(press written by Minty Donald)
23 April – Hanna Tuulikki, Bell’s Bridge, G51 – 3.15pm
24 April – John Cavanagh – Riverside Museum, G3 8RS – 3.45pm
25 April – Nichola Scrutton – Dixon Street, G1 4AL – 4.05pm
26 April – Douglas Morland – Clyde north waterfront between Victoria and Glasgow Bridges, G5 – 4.45pm
27 April – Minty Donald/Nick Millar – citywide – 5.25pm (and throughout the week)
28 April – 5pm and 7.30pm – Clydeport Authority Headquarters
Songs for a Stranger is a collection or cycle of five electroacoustic works that draws metaphorical inspiration from the many senses of the word ‘stranger’.
Everyone feels like a stranger sometimes – when travelling somewhere new; returning home; confronting solitude. Some feel estranged in close intimacy; others find connection through anonymity.
Songs for a Stranger movements:
i A Fragile Memory (4’40)
ii Blowing In (5′)
iii Solitude? (4’26)
iv I Said You Said (5′)
v In the Midst (4’39)
The piece was premiered in the intimate ‘dark space’ at The Arches LIVE! Festival in September 2011, performed and diffused over a 4-channel speaker system. Vocal performance: me and Céline Hänni. Sound diffusion: Graeme Truslove. Many thanks indeed to the staff at The Arches.
Songs for a Stranger was further supported by a Creative Scotland Quality Arts Production Award.
**** Joyce McMillan, The Scotsman 23/0911, Arches Live!, Glasgow
……And down at the rough end of the basement, in a bare tunnel of a room, there’s composer Nichola Scrutton’s Songs For A Stranger, a 25-minute piece that moves beyond the limits of language into five segments of abstract electronic sound, accompanied by the increasingly fierce and brilliant vocal improvisations of Scrutton and her performing partner, Celine Hanni. There’s a central moment of meditation – titled Solitude – that recalls the deep resonances of Tibetan chant; then a final, shattering visit to what sounds like a dying rainforest, as a fierce richness of animal sound gives way to crackling cataclysm, and the soft, low sigh of a final breath….
*** Mary Brennan, The Herald (“…as a live performance, full of vertiginous vocal techniques, it was always impressive…”)
2014 Selected Artist, Voix Brutes Vol II, Audition Records, Berlin (v: in the midst)
2012 Basic.fm, broadcast by Pixel.Palace, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK (v: in the midst)
2011 The Arches LIVE! Festival, Glasgow
SoundAround was a mental health music/sound workshop + performance project co-facilitated with Erin Scrutton.
Over 10 weekly sessions we created a range of musical materials using voice, drumming, percussion and recorded sounds to create a final live interactive performance for the ‘Come Awa’ In’ opening weekend of Perth Concert Hall in Scotland.
And Then She Said sister duo Nichola Scrutton and Erin Scrutton in association with Plan B Collective created HumDrum to celebrate 100 years of International Women’s Day. Subsequent events included the West End Festival and the Royal Highland Show.
Big thanks to our sponsors above, and a HUGE THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO WAS INVOLVED – what a joyous day of celebration!!
Check out some photos of the HumDrum event at the Royal Concert Hall steps in Glasgow to celebrate 100 years of International Women’s Day at Universal News.
5th March, Glasgow
5th June: West End Festival
25th June: Royal Highland Show.
The Dwelling Series is a triptych of vocal works. Multiple concepts arising from the notion of the title Dwelling gave rise to an interactive process of improvising and recording with MAXMSP, through which I sought to explore a sense of ‘inhabiting’ the work. As inspiration for generating improvised material under this complex umbrella concept of ‘dwelling’ I used three general metaphors to articulate events or states: dust (essence), cycle (flow/journey) and echo (memory).
The compositional process
The compositional process consisted of creating successive vocal improvisations, which were merged together, fully intact, after each improvisation was captured. Manipulation of the captured improvisations was strictly limited to the editing of gestures and textures in time and space to enhance or magnify relationships/conflicts that emerged by chance as each layer was added.
(i) Dwelling/In Dialogue: studio composition (17′).
(ii) Dwelling/Encounters: pre-composed sound and live performance, in which two live performers merged and improvised with a pre-composed soundtrack projected through multiple loud speakers. Swiss vocalist Céline Hänni and I undertook a short intensive residency to explore extended technique vocal improvisation that culminated in the final performance. (12’30)
(iii) Dwelling/In Reflection: live interactive solo performance (18′)