Friday 18th March see’s the launch of a new audio-visual installation entitled “WEAVE:ECHO“ at the Royal Exchange Theatre, in Manchester.
The aim of WEAVE:ECHO is to create and nurture an active audience experience. Rather than passively listening to a pre-recorded piece of music in a space, now anyone situated in the Great Hall will be able to take responsibility for how the sound develops and changes within it, thus also becoming a performer.
At specific times of the day a series of vocal fragments will be played in the Great Hall of the Royal Exchange. Members of the public will be able to change pitch and cross-fade between sounds by tweeting a message to @jasonsinghthing or @rxtheatre containing the hashtag #biggestroom. There will also be a screen situated in the Royal Exchange cafe on which the incoming tweets will be viewable.
The installation is a collaboration with super creative software architect, Cassiel (Nick Rothwell), who has designed and built the software system using MAX MSP and other programming environments.
(Above image : The innards of WEAVE:ECHO)
This project is a “Biggest Room in the World” artist commission, through which artists are given the opportunity to create a response to the space of the Great Hall. As a performer I have always been interested in the role of the audience and way’s in which the audience may have an active role within the creative experience. This is also the first time I am working with a programmer to create a joint collaborative project. I am working with technology in a way I have never done before, which means It’s all quite scary and with quite a few unknowns. Still, it’s exciting and challenging and I am truly grateful to the Royal Exchange for being openminded and adventurous!
I would like to say a huge Thank You to the following people for helping make WEAVE:ECHO a reality…
Nick Rothwell (Cassiel) for creating the software system that processes the Twitter hashtags and audio, and also for making me appreciate the complexities of software development! Royal Exchange Team: Amanda Dalton (Exchange Director of Engagement), Matthew Xia (Associate Artistic Director), Kate Reynolds (Producer), Sorcha Williams (Head of Sound), Dave “Huzzah” Norton (Senior Sound Technician) and Zak Clifford (IT Support and Network Technician).
I would also like to say a huge Thank You to Beth Allen and the Sacred Sounds Women’s Choir for their contributions in the R+D process and for their incredible enthusiasm for trying out new things!
So, if you fancy getting involved, just tweet @rxtheatre with a message containing the hashtag #biggestroom and if your are in the Great Hall space, you’ll be able to see it coming in on the display situated in the Cafe area and also hear what your tweet does to the audio!
WEAVE:ECHO is launched on Friday 18th March at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester. Me and Nick will be performing a live set at SFX this Friday between 5.30pm and 6.30pm. Maybe see you there.