In order to get my research structured, I wrote a paper in a way I got used to during my former university degree at the VU in Amsterdam. In this article I describe the theoretical background and practical development of my interactive music systems that attempt to embrace intuition, body and movement in musical practice and experience.
On November 8th 2017 I performed a set of half an hour at Grand Theatre, as part of Sounds of Music festival. First I started with Iets Paars with Desta Matla, then I continued with my own music.
However, afterwards I had a bad feeling about this performance for many reasons. It all started being ill. I caught the flu two days before the performance and my voice suffered from it as well. And I started worrying a lot about it. So I didn’t only feel sick, I was also super stressed out, which really didn’t help. Also on the day of the performance I felt like lying in bed. But I wanted to do the performance anyway, so with this ill and stressed out vibe I started setting up. What then happened in short: I communicated badly with the organisation of the festival, I forgot many things, made bad decisions and carried a negative energy with me. And because of all this, I didn’t even feel like performing. And I think this was audible in my music (together with my weak sick voice).
During MADtech’s 10-day visit to New York, I performed six songs at Sunnyvale in Brooklyn NYC:
Desta and I started collaborating. We composed a soundscape on her poem “Iets Paars” that can be intuitively performed with the body.
On september 29th, I demonstrated a work-in-progress version of my newly built instrument at Healthy Ageing festival in Groningen. I experimented with translating body movements to violin sounds. With the installation / musical instrument that I demonstrated on the festival, people could play a virtual violin with arm movements, and trigger background ambience with body position.
This experiment came out of my interest to make music with intuitive body movements, similar to my previous works Our Harmony and Phone Cello. I built this instrument with Kinect, Delicode_NI_Mate, Max 7, and Ableton Live 9.
On September 24th, I performed at DOT in Groningen. It was a nice sunny day, so me and several other musicians performed outside on a terrace.
However, I felt uncomfortable in this setting. People were enjoying the sun, all of them having loud conversations. Many children playing. And I was there, making noise, disturbing their conversations in the sun. The other musicians were mostly songwriters with guitars and sometimes with violinists. What they did felt like it suited the nice and sunny day with the people on the terrace. But my music has deep bass, sometimes heavy emotions, and beats, and doesn’t suit that vibe at all. I just felt out of place, and couldn’t get my message / feeling across. It felt like a nice and sunny entertainment event, which is not a bad thing. But it just feels like I should have brought my guitar, and sung songs about lost boyfriends, and make remarks about good beer, but that’s not my thing. Lesson learnt: learn more about the event, environment, and the type of audience. And even though some people view me as a singer songwriter, I think I don’t fit in an event between singer songwriters.
Helping Richard Bolhuis with building up his performance in a church
Today I joined Richard’s team to help with his performance and see and learn from how he does things. I find his work and vision very inspiring, so I thought it could be valuable to see his ways of working.
Every year a performance by Richard is organised in a church in a small village called Oostum. It is a magical place, very beautiful, in the countryside, with a very small church.
Below are some videos of my 40 minute performance at Taribush Kuna festival:
Introduction: how my research proposal works
This is the starting point of my research proposal. My research proposal is based on my entire blog (madtech.me/artists/kayleighbeard), on which I have been writing during the first year of studying MADtech.
The first thing you’ll see on that page is a collection of featured works, which are videos, pictures, and (process) descriptions of more or less finished works (the show-offs). At the end of this collection it says “EVERYTHING BY KAYLEIGH BEARD”, and all of my blog articles will follow. These articles are chronologically ordered and contain everything mixed: small notes, random thoughts, ideas, works in progress, reflections, finished works, experiments, inspirations, references, and so on.
During the opening of the exhibition “Grow” in De Nieuwe Kolk in Assen I performed a very new, unfinished work-in-progress: “To Become a Child, No More”. This exhibition is part of the ‘Work in Progress II: The Sequel’, in which groups of students from the Frank Mohr Institute work in shifts in the exhibition space and build up on the works of the other student groups.
During the event The World We Live In, in the Prins Claus Conservatory Groningen on May 20, I performed a 30 minute set with the songs:
- A Stranger’s Shadow
- My Hunters Lead the Way
- Human Dissonance
- Beyond the Puddle
The installation Our Harmony is a result of a collaboration between me and two master students from ‘New Audiences and Innovative Practices’ (NAIP) from the conservatory: Kim Bosch and Stefan Kirschbaum. For several months NAIP students and MADtech students had been collaborating to create a one day experimental music festival that we in the end called Hotch Potch. So during this festival on May 13, 2017, many visitors were walking in and out of Our Harmony. By moving their shared position people could trigger sounds and music. Only in collaboration they could really move the music. During performances, the audience was also able to interact with live musicians, and create an atmosphere together.
For a while I have dreamed to be able to play the cello. What a beautiful instrument. I searched for classes, but ended up not taking them because I didn’t have the money, time, and energy for it. I wanted to focus fully on performing, singing and composition. But this wish, and my love for the timbre of the cello didn’t go away. What if I could quickly build an intuitive instrument for myself, so that I could be able to express myself with something that comes close to a cello?
Description of my music and songs
– What makes your music / band special?
“I stumbled upon your wilderness
All of a sudden
Immersed by all your elements
While surrounded by flora and cleaned by your falls
There you are