Most of my time in 2023 was taken up by Celestial Live project, a year long Creative R&D project funded by InnovateUK. We found some new ways to make drone light shows, using real-time interactive technology and in particular interacting with music.

I also continued to develop my Signal to Noise performance, which combines live visuals with multi-channel ambisonic sound. A number of performances took place in 2023, including at the Sound/Image festival in London and Visible Bits, Audible Bytes at the Phoenix Arts Centre, Leicester.

I also worked on two new collaborations: One was Nothing is What it Seems to be, with performance artists Melanie Thompson and Grace Surman, based on the powerful work and tragically short life of photographer Francesca Woodman. This was an immersive site-specfic work based at the wonderful Zig Zag building in Glastonbury. I worked with a number of local musicians and some recordings made in the space (see photos below) to contribute some musical interludes and sound design. It was lots of fun!

The other was Fu:Jazz, a new improvised performance with jazz maestros John Law (piano), Iain Ballamy (sax) and Alex Goodyear (drums). I provided some atmospheric soundscapes while John expanded his palette with some nice synths and Alex made really interesting use of an electronic drum kit with some unusual sounds. The premiere took place at the beautiful American Museum in Bath – more to follow.

An older collaboration also got a bit of a revival this year. This was Unfold to Centre, with Yorke Dance Project. This work, first produced in 2013, uses as its basis seminal computer animation 3/78 by Larry Cuba. Choreographer Yolande Yorke-Edgill produced a new expanded version for 13 dancers which was premiered at The Place, London in March and is slated for more performances soon. I revised my score, which uses the haunting Shakuhachi solo from the original film as its basis. I must get some of this online one of these days!

I’ve also been working on some bits of writing. I’m writing a chapter provisionally titled ‘Tracing Music Technology to its Interdisciplinary Roots’ for The Routledge Handbook to Rethinking the History of Technology-Based Music, which discusses how a much more diverse history of music technology can be found by taking an overview across the arts. And I’m co-editing a volume, with Steve Gibson, Donna Leishman and Yan Breuleux and also for Routledge, titled Audiovisualism: Reframing Relationships between Sound and Image. Both should appear in 2025.

Finally, I became a Director of Purple Noise, a CIC based in Frome and Trowbridge to provide music technology education and facilities across the region. We’re planning various projects – watch this space!