Breathing Space

RISE by Breathing Space

A new site-specific durational performance and sound installation with the Blackpool High Tide organ and melting ice.

Breathing Space are a collective who create site specific performances in non-traditional spaces, using improvisation, choral voices with electro-acoustic soundscapes and live experimental instrumentation. We use improvisation and performance to uncover and discover the stories, history and physical resonance behind the spaces we work in to shape content and form. Through working outside the traditional performance space we often perform to unsuspecting audiences, inspiring people to re-imagine spaces and adding new memory and story to sites. Our backgrounds are a vibrant mixture of classical training and self-taught musicianship.

Whilst in Blackpool for Other Worlds festival last year we visited the High Tide Organ which sewed the seed for this year’s performance. It is a unique part of the city and we were inspired by its elemental nature, how it is played by water, air and time. We became intrigued with the idea of sounding along with nature and what it is to be connected to nature in this way, in contrast to our urban everyday disconnect from natural forces, until they come to the forefront through environmental ‘disasters’ such as flooding, rising sea levels and the melting of polar ice caps. We want to join the organ’s voice and explore this wider context further.

Breathing Space will perform with the organ for two hours around high tide, from approx 12 until 2pm, Saturday 9th April. We will sound the notes of the organ in a call and response to the sea, echoing the pitch of the pipes, singing the sea back at itself in a sonic meditation on the natural pace of time and the continuous movement of the tide. The audience will be invited to participate with pieces of text about rising sea levels and the environmental impact of melting ice.

Simultaneously, the High Tide Organ performance audio will be live streamed into an installation environment with a quadraphonic sound system in non-traditional venue in the city centre. Melting ice will be the sound source for a live improvisation alongside the audio stream. Transmitting an audio feed away from the coast and into the centre of town brings the voice of the organ, and therefore the sea, and the sound of ice melting into an urban environment, uncovering another layer of disconnection, in order to create an opportunity to foster a new connection.

Performing with the High Tide Organ will slow time to a natural pace whilst the content of the piece explores larger notions of running out of time. The live stream element investigates notions of time, space and performance across a virtual platform.

 

Breathing Space is Lou Barnell, Melaina Barnes, Stephen Shiell, Hannah White and Phoebe Wright-Spinks.  Sound design by Ian Thompson, sound engineering by Andy Nuttall.