We'll Find Out When We Get There With Drew Crawford and Plus-Minus Ensemble

Alice Purton (Plus Minus Ensemble) performing in the John Hansard Gallery as part of a creative workshop. Photo: Nathan Thomas

A Hindu palace echoing with the melodies of the finest court musicians. An enchanted night garden, full of curious insects and talking plants. A disco the size of a three story building….

A folk song in an echoing square, a cave sighing in the wind, a cathedral awaiting its congregation.


Three performances:

We’ll Find Out When We Get There is a major new inter-disciplinary work exploring sound, space and human perception. A site-responsive collaboration between composer/creative director Drew Crawford, the virtuosic musicians of Plus Minus Ensemble and Tim Hand (audio), the one-hour work lies at the intersection of musical performance, art installation, choreography and acoustic experiment, designed to respond to and illuminate the aural architecture of the multi-chamber gallery spaces in which it is performed.

The term “site-responsive” refers to the way in which the work has been designed to adapt to a variety of multi-space gallery venues, activating those spaces and responding to their acoustic properties and choreographic/theatrical potentials.

In the process, our deeply emotional and often unconscious relationship to space is made conscious and audible: sounds expand to fill the whole gallery, then contract to a single, intimate corner; melodies are moved around physically in myriad ingenious ways; sine waves completely frustrate our sense of the built environment.

Playful, thoughtful, immersive, accessible and engaging, yet emotionally complex – come and experience John Hansard Gallery in a new way.

This project has been developed with support from the University of Southampton Department of Music, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Southampton Institute for the Arts and Humanities, and Public Engagement with Research Unit.

About the performers:

Drew Crawford is UK-based Australian composer, producer, sound-designer, songwriter and educator. His work spans opera, theatre, dance, pop, cabaret, installation, sound design, radio, TV, film, the concert hall, and digital platforms. He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Music at the University of Southampton and his current research projects foregrounds music-making as embodied, relational, and situated within wider ecologies.

Plus-Minus Ensemble is one of Europe’s leading proponents of New Music, committed to commissioning new work and placing it alongside recent and landmark modern repertoire, distinguished by its interest in performative, electroacoustic and conceptual pieces.

Tim Hand is a leading audio engineer and production manager. Working across disciplines and genres, Tim has delivered sound solutions for London Jazz Festival (Southbank Venues, Barbican), BT River of Music (Somerset House Stage) and large-scale outdoor site specific art performances and exhibitions as part of major festivals including Brighton and Greenwich and Docklands. In 2021 he was the sound designer for the Aurora Orchestra’s immersive surround sound performance of Beethoven’s 7th Symphony at Printworks, London.

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