Dear Nocta-nauts (credit to Little Earthquake for that catchy name), the sun is shining and over the past few days it has been unbelievably hot, you may have noticed. I daren’t step outside because of that great yellow thing in the sky and if I do I’m sticking to the shade like some sort of ninja.
But as I sit here and write, there is a cool breeze coming through my window giving a sense calm amongst the mayhem. Its been a weird and heartbreaking month around the country, and if there’s one thing that I’ve noticed, it’s that we the British public know how to come together in times of crisis. It really is that quintessential British trait of just carrying on, no matter what.
We come together, we support each other and we move forward.
This was noticeable when Connor and I went up to Manchester back in May, only days after the attack at the arena, to visit the John Rylands library to look at the Delia Derbyshire archive. Yes, there was extra police presence, but were the streets deserted? Absolutely not! The city was going about its business as usual, so we did the same.
We explored all that the archive had to offer, and it had a lot to offer, we barely scratched the surface with the vast amount of information that was up for grabs. But it intrigued us and we felt we knew a little more about this iconic composer. A big thank you as well to Dr. David Butler of Manchester University for seeing us that day and telling us all he could about Delia.
We are now back in the rehearsal room working on our new show, Hymns for Robots. Our first objective; to collate all of our information that we had gathered over the past few months about the sound sculptress, Delia Derbyshire, and to put together a timeline of her life and the events surrounding it.
Look at all that paper! We seem to have really taken a liking to using paper and post it notes and writing everything down to see. Something we have Little Earthquake to thank for (again) with their continually helpful mentoring sessions.
Our next stop on our journey of sound was a quick visit down to London to meet Robin the Fog from Howlround; who use reel to reel tape to create their unique soundscapes. This was a real hit to the senses both aurally and visually. Seeing the tape machines in action, creating such fantastic sounds in minutes was truly remarkable, this experience really helped us delve deeper into the world of electronic music. We were fascinated by the music that artists such as Pierre Henry and Pierre Schaeffer were producing and how ahead of their time they were considered, and how music is still influenced by it today.
Pierre Henry wrote a song called “Psyché Rock” in 1967, can you tell me which animated series it might have inspired for its opening theme music?
We will be back at the Belgrade this September (22nd to be precise) with our work in progress event. We hope to see as many people there as possible! As well as a performance we will be holding a post show discussion so we can hear all of your feedback about our show. Don’t worry this won’t be the last you hear about this event, as I’m sure we’ll be reminding you over and over and over again!
All you eager beavers can click here to reserve your seats NOW, tickets are ‘pay what you can’.
So stay tuned as we keep you upto date with all things Noctium.