We were sent this promo vid for a forthcoming series ‘Classical Music in Modern Dress’.
All well and good, but what does it add to the music?
The organiser tells us:
Musicians and researchers from London College of Music, UWL will be creating an extraordinary immersive sonic and visual world of classical music re-imagined for the 21st century at King’s Place, London on October 7th. Pieces by Chopin, Debussy, Franck, Haydn, Ravel and Shostakovich will be performed on digital keyboards and an electric string quartet and mixed and processed live into a surround sound audio system. This UK Arts and Humanities Research Council funded project is experimenting with fresh interpretations of music from the classical repertoire by taking a leaf out of the book of modern Shakespearian theatre and staging Classical Music “In Modern Dress”.
Professor Simon Zagorski-Thomas, the leader of the project, says: “We’re using our interpretations of these familiar pieces to devise dub mixes, multimedia surround-sound projections and expressive audio visual processing that we think sheds new light on old favourites. We’re performing Shostakovich’s dramatic 8th string quartet through a battery of guitar effects pedals. We’re drawing on Haydn’s playful wit and imaginative variation in his Piano Sonata in C to vary the sounds as well as the pitches and rhythms – getting inside the piano and scratching, scraping and hitting it. And we’re expanding on the impressionistic aspects of the Ravel and Debussy pieces to create sensuous and evocative surround sound environments that conjure up the various magical, whimsical and wistful narratives of the music.”
Professor Zagorski-Thomas will be joined in the performance by Dr. Andrew Bourbon, Dr. Emilie Capulet and Nataša Šarčević of London College of Music, postgraduate students Trinh Lu, Sulhee Kim and the Konvalia Electric String Quartet.