Musicians and Poets in Collaboration

During the Spring lockdown of 2021, IAC Research Fellow Dr Nicholas Ng curated and performed in two projects combining music with the written word. These works debuted during Bold Transition Seminars 2021: Memory, Raw Materiality and Transformation - Seminar 2, an interdisciplinary meeting of creative researchers conceptualised and convened by A/Prof Bruce Crossman as part of the university’s “Research Creations Showcase 2021”.

Bird Calendar and Stumbling Upon a Brick Chimney Shaft features some of WSU’s best creative minds from IAC including Dr Kate Fagan (Director, Writing and Society Research Centre), Dr Waldo Garrido (Senior Lecturer in Music) and a fine cohort of HDR students: Jake Goetz (narrator/poet), Gwenda Davies (harp/voice), Claire Deak (transducer/sound design), Dr Brad Gill (percussion/sound design).

Bird Calendar 

Do you ever get the feeling that you are being watched? Look up and you will see our friendly feathered friends, the birds of the sky, often contributing in colourful ways to our daily soundscapes.

Bird Calendar (voice, bass, erhu, sound design) brings three WSU creatives together in the celebration of Australia’s beautiful bird ecology. Dr Kate Fagan (Director, Writing and Society Research Centre) shares in a very personal way, her sensitive observation of the migratory birds in the Blue Mountains region. Her voice is sonically manipulated by Dr Dr Nicholas Ng (Research Fellow), who delivers complementary erhu lines with groovy moments of bass riffs performed by Dr Waldo Garrido (Senior Lecturer in Music).

Stumbling Upon A Brick Chimney Shaft

WSU HDRs Jake Goetz (poetry), Claire Deak (transducers, sound design), Gwenda Davies (harp, voice) and Dr Brad Gill (percussion, sound design) came together over a series of Zoom meetings to produce this stunning account of the lives of migrant and local miners of the historic Mt Keira-Kemira Colliery in Wollongong. The visceral imagery of Jake Goetz’s gritty trauma poem is brought to life by Claire’s digital sound design, Brad evocative percussion, and the dulcet tones of Gwenda’s harp and voice. Dr Nicholas Ng’s bird-like interweaving húlusi add to the industrial landscape evoked by the images curated by Gwenda.