Thursday 23 July 2009

Fen Soundscape

Here's a video from our Fen Soundscape project. Since March 2009, children at Ramsey Spinning Infants School and young people from the nearby village of Yaxley have been working with professional musicians and composers to write, record and edit music inspired by the Great Fen.

On Tuesday 21 July, the results of all their hard work were displayed to the public for the first time at St Thomas a Becket church in Ramsey. On entering the church, visitors were greeted by the sounds of birdsong and a series of signs and arrows taped to the floor. Following the arrows around the church, they came across doormats concealing "trigger pads" which, when stepped on, triggered a series of sounds to be played from the speakers attached to the church's pillars. Sounds ranged from the peaceful (birds twittering - both real and as interpreted on flutes and violins) to the more startling (geese flying overhead, a simulated storm). The whole thing added up to a magical experience brilliantly recreating the sounds and atmosphere of the Great Fen.

A series of performances included young children from Ramsey singing some of the Little Songs for the Great Fen which they have written with composer Jane Wells, followed by a Britten Sinfonia flute quartet playing Mozart and Rossini. Speeches, including a polished performance from Yaxley teenager AJ Mulley, set the scene and explained how the Soundscape had been put together.

The exhibition continues at St Thomas a Becket Church, Ramsey, until Sunday 26 July. Entry is free, and the exhibition is open daily from 8.30am to 5.30pm, except during Sunday services.

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