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berwick music series

The Art of Sound - Berwick-upon-Tweed

Thursday 21 November 2019

The 2019 Berwick Music Series culminates on Thursday 21st November with a programme celebrating the Art of Sound. The day’s events will include a sound-art installation, workshop, lunchtime concert, and of particular local interest – a community performance.
Around 20 local musicians, including pupils from Berwick schools, will participate in a community performance of James Tenney’s harmonic composition In a Large Open Space in Berwick Parish Church. The performance will be led by internationally renowned string quartet Quatuor Bozzini who are performing earlier in the day.



The Berwick Music Series 2019 will culminate on Thursday 21 November with a programme of musical events exploring The Art of Sound, bringing together musicians and academics in unique collaborations. The day will consist of a sound installation composed by Martin Parker, a concert from internationally renowned string quartet Quatuor Bozzini, a workshop exploring sound and space, before finishing with a community performance of music by James Tenney in Berwick Parish Church.

At 10:30am composer Martin Parker will introduce his Sonikebana, a long-form composition of local soundscapes played through multiple speakers housed in decorated wooden boxes on wheels. The audience will be invited to move the speakers around images by artist Anna Chapman Parker in order to shape their own musical outcome. Sonikebana takes its name from the refined Japanese art form of flower arranging, Ikebana, which involves the careful arrangement of plant matter in order to reveal something already present (but hidden) in the materials being arranged.
The highlight of the day will be a lunchtime concert of music by Weeks, Worboys and Shostakovich provided by Canadian string quartet Quatuor Bozzini in the Berwick Watchtower at 12 noon. Formed in Montréal, Canada in 1999, Quatuor Bozzini has been an original voice in new, experimental and classical music. The quartet has received world-renown for their “extraordinary playing.” (Alex Ross, The New Yorker) and diverse repertoire, unbiased by the currents of fashion. A Quatuor Bozzini concert is an intensely shared experience, with meticulous and sensuous attention to detail, not to be missed.

In the afternoon there will be a workshop at Berwick Parish Centre curated by BMS Artistic Director Mike Worboys (University of Greenwich) and John Stell (University of Leeds) at 3:00pm. Sound in Space - Space in Sound will be a multi-disciplinary workshop to explore cultural and formal relationships between space and sound. A series of talks will discuss relationships and connections between music and the spaces we live in and of our imaginations - touching upon spatial metaphors in music, sound and fine art, sonic imagery in poetry, sound installations, and sound-art in the environment. Speakers include artists and scientists from across the UK and USA.
Finally at 6:30pm there will be a community performance in Berwick Parish Church. Around 20 local musicians, including pupils from Berwick schools, will join Quatuor Bozzini in a performance of James Tenney’s In a Large, Open Space, a harmonic exploration and celebration of the natural phenomena of sound.
Prof. Mike Worboys, Artistic Director of the Berwick Music Series, commented that “The first two concerts of the series were stand-out successes. We are delighted with the support we have received from Berwick Town Council, and from our funders and sponsors, enabling us to bring the highest quality performers to Berwick. The Berwick Music Series is an opportunity for people to both enjoy and learn about music and sound-art.”

Pam Campion, Chair of the Berwick Educational Association Trustees, added “I am delighted that, under Mike Worboys’ direction, we have put together a very strong programme with absolutely top-class performers, and one which provides a unique opportunity for Berwick musicians.”
Tickets for The Art of Sound are available online; the installation and community performance are free, the workshop costs £6, the Quatuor Bozzini concert £10, and a joint ticket costs £12. To book tickets and for more information about the Berwick Music Series 2019 visit

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