Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
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4 October 2007 PR 07/126

University arts programme launches with a celebration of sound

Music inspired by Loughborough, and a sonic bed are just two of the exciting events on offer in the University’s new arts programme.

Launched at the start of October, the programme, entitled ‘RADAR’, features some of the most interesting contemporary artists working today.

“We’ve taken the University’s arts programme in a new direction this year,” says arts director Nick Slater. “We’re focusing predominantly on newly commissioned work, much of which will relate directly to Loughborough and will also link into research being undertaken at the University.”

Events will take place at venues around the town.

The programme begins with Sound Walks – six new pieces of work by internationally recognised sound artists and musicians. The works have all been inspired by different areas of Loughborough, including the University’s sports hall, the industrial soundscape of the Brush Factory, and the empty swimming pool under the floor of Charnwood Museum. Download the pieces from the RADAR website at www.lboro.ac.uk/radar/soundwalk and take a walking tour of the town to gain a unique first impression of Loughborough or add a new dimension to familiar surroundings.

From 10 to 28 October visitors to Charnwood Museum will be able to experience the award winning Sonic Bed – a unique structure containing 14 speakers. Lie down on the bed and let an endless loop of sounds wash over you. The frequency and intensity of the sounds mean they can be felt as well as heard.

15 November sees British artists Juneau Projects give a free performance at the University Music Centre of their latest work, Sewn to the Sky – an interactive sound and visual experience that seamlessly integrates a four-piece band performance with an interactive visual animation.

On 2 December one of the UK’s most compelling sound artists, Janek Schaefer, will perform a one-off concert in the University’s David Wallace sports hall. His bold, beautiful compositions have earned him a reputation that spreads across the globe. Janek’s cult status rests on his trademark, adapted, multi-arm turntable, weaving live vinyl with found sounds into intimate, hypnotic and exhilarating soundscapes. For The Sporting Guide to the Speed of Sound, specially commissioned for Loughborough, Janek has taken recordings of sports activity at the University which have been incorporated into the piece.

The first arts programme concludes with a collaboration between the multi award-winning Cantamus Choir and the highly talented composer and sound artist, Mikhail Karikis – an event not to be missed. Mikhail’s extraordinary vocal range, from animalistic growls to extremely high pure tone, can be heard in his collaboration with Bjork, and more recently in his partnering with classical voice ensembles, which allow his vocal range to contrast with the more traditional choral work. The celebrated Cantamus Choir and Mikhail will perform a new composition on 26 January 2008 at the Emmanuel Church, fusing their unique sounds to create an enthralling new work.

Further information about the RADAR arts programme can be found at www.lboro.ac.uk/service/arts/radar/index.html

– Ends –

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Notes for editors:

  1. Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for excellence in teaching and research, strong links with industry and unrivalled sporting achievement.

    It is a member of the esteemed 1994 Group – a set of internationally recognised, research intensive universities – and has a reputation for the relevance of its work. Its degree programmes are highly regarded by professional institutions and businesses, and its graduates are consistently targeted by the UK’s top recruiters.

    Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

    In the 2007 National Student Survey, the University was voted fourth in the UK, with 23 out of 29 of Loughborough’s subject areas being ranked in the top ten for overall satisfaction. Loughborough is also ranked in the top five of UK universities in national league tables and was named winner of the 2006 THES award for the UK’s Best Student Experience. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded five Queen's Anniversary Prizes – an achievement bettered by no other university.

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