FIRST LOVES #2: SEQUENTIAL PROPHET 10
First Loves is a series of recordings from first encounters on legendary synthesisers. FIRST LOVES #2 was recorded on the Prophet 10 during 2021.
CHAIRWAY TO HEAVEN
MONA FOMA FESTIVAL 2021
Following on from the successful collaboration with Soma Lumia that transformed the The Penny Royal’s beloved 'Dark Ride' for MONA FOMA 2020, composers Sooji Kim, Katerina Stathis and Mads Davey turned the iconic Scenic Chairlift into a moving installation for Mona Foma 2021.
Launceston’s jewel, the Gorge Scenic Chairlift was transformed into a 20-voice instrument in this unique audio-experiential installation. Participants became a moving part of a ‘suspended symphony’ in the sky whilst taking in the natural wonders of the gorge setting.
Two speakers were optimally positioned on each of the 20 chairs. Each participant experienced a sound world that shifted and evolved as the chairs passed each other and their sound fields merged. Reflecting relationships of sounds in nature and the ebb and flow of life cycles, the experience of this work was both a contemplative and mesmerising meditation and an inspiring ode to nature.
Strategically positioned speakers also allowed for the composition to be experienced by the observer on the ground from various vantage points around the park. The wash of sound from above was punctuated with calls and responses that seemed to echo out from the expanse of The Gorge park itself. The composition was composed and recorded by Sooji Kim, Katerina Stathis and Mads Davey on the incredibly rare and priceless collection of synths at Melbourne Electronic Sound Studio (MESS.)
This project is centred on intensive collaboration with sound artist Aviva Endean and mentors to examine imaginative approaches to composition and improvisation with the combination of woodwind and analogue synthesisers utilising the MESS (Melbourne Electronic Sound Studios) collection.
Breath instruments served as important timbral inspirations for early electronic instruments including the ‘Moog 55’ system. There is a significant crossover of ‘sound worlds’ between many synthesisers and woodwind instruments, however, in terms of the qualities of size, structure and immediacy as a performance instrument, a clarinet and a Moog 55 could not be more opposed. Utilising techniques including multiphonics, envelope shaping and timbral sculpting we will explore ways to create new compositions which slip effortlessly between unification and juxtaposition of these instruments.
(Recordings soon to be available online)
WOODWIND AND ANALOGUE SYNTH COLLABORATIVE PROJECT
MESS LIVE AT THE BOWL
Live at the Bowl saw the world premiere of the MESS (Melbourne Electronic Sound Studios) Synthesiser Orchestra performing an epic, newly commissioned piece called Magnitudes on Saturday 27 March 2021 as part of MESS at the Bowl.
The MESS Synthesiser Orchestra brought together an almost impossible array of cutting edge synthesisers spanning from the 1960s to the present day. Performing as one ensemble for Live at the Bowl, this was one of the largest gatherings of these iconic electronic musical instruments ever seen on stage.
The inauguration of the MESS Synthesiser Orchestra signalled the beginning of a series of mass activations of the MESS collection at an extraordinary scale. There was an incredible array of electronic instruments from right across the history of electronic music on stage – some for the first time in many decades.
Audiences were entranced by Magnitudes – composed and conducted by Mat Watson – a performance event which made use of 40 synths and 16 performers in the newly formed MESS Synthesiser Orchestra.
Magnitudes moved through tonal, textural, melodic, harmonic, abstract and absurd themes to reveal itself across multiple movements. Intense sound phenomena and complete chaos gave way to moments of stillness and feelings of euphoria.