New Adventures in Sound Art is a non-profit organization that produces performances and installations spanning the entire spectrum of electroacoustic and experimental sound art. Through our workshops, lectures, and demonstrations we try to teach a new perception of sound offering the opportunity to educate artists and audiences both locally and abroad.
Since November 1998, New Adventures in Sound Art has facilitated Sound Travels residencies for over forty composers across Canada and in Europe. We have presented lectures, concerts, public workshops and installations in partnership with many leading contemporary arts institutions, such as the Danish Institute for Electroacoustic Music, the Logos Foundation, the Banff Centre for the Arts, and the Western Front to name just a few. In the summer of 2000, Sound Travels launched an annual summer outdoor concert series at the Gibraltar Point Centre for the Arts on Hanlan's Point in Toronto.
This year (2002) we expanded our Toronto events to three, bringing our programming to a full season and including as many aspects of electroacoustic and experimental sound art as we could fit into one years activities. Having a three-event season proved to be a huge undertaking given our limited resources, but the effort has been fruitful for the organization. We try to structure each event to include several different aspects of electroacoustic and sound art so that our audience will come to expect something new and exciting at each and every event.
This year we were fortunate enough to work with an incredibe roster of talented artists including: Jonty Harrison, Wende Bartley, Kristiana Clemens, Don Zentner, David Perlman, Chris Twomey, Nilan Pererea, Susanna Hood, Neil Wiernik and Greg Williard in Deep Wireless; David Eagle, Nicholas Longstaff, Vivienne Spiteri, Rob Godman, Bentley Jarvis, Darren Copeland, Jim Ruxton, Galen Scorer and Tania Etienne for the Sign Waves installations series; Lori Freedman, Laura Wilcox, Maggie Payne, David Eagle, Wende Bartley, Erin Donavan, John D.S. Admas, John Little, and Marilyn Lerner in Sound Travels; and coming up November 13-16, 2002 David Toop, Sarah Peebles, Nilan Perera, Christian Calon, and Shelley Hirsch in SOUNDplay.
DEEP WIRELESS - a celebration of Radio Art (April 2002)
Deep Wireless was a complete surprise for us, growing from a tiny seed in our Artistic Directors imagination to gigantic proportions in less than a few months. We were overwhelmed with interest from artists locally and internationally who wanted to participate in some way. In fact, we have enough material from general inquiries made in February and March, 2002 to provide plenty of interesting programming for the next two annual Deep Wireless events.
A series of Radio Art Interventions and full-length radio art pieces were made available and programmed on several Toronto and area radio stations. The interventions were one-minute excerpts of radio art that were inserted randomly into CKLN and CIUT programming.
The Deep Wireless concert series opened with a special tribute to radio art co-presented by The Ambient Ping (a weekly concert series of experimental ambient music at Club Nia) that included among others Susanna Hood, Nilan Perera and Neil Wiernik. Radio signals, sound effects and laptops were used to create their ambient pieces.
David Perlman (editor of The Wholenote) provided commentary for the second concert in the series, "Radio in Concert." The purpose of his commentary was to put the audience "in the know" about what they were about to hear. These informative elements were enhanced by the publication of our first educational booklet "The Radio Art Companion" and its accompanying CD "The Radio Art Comp." The Booklet and CD were given out free to all the audience and workshop attendees and included articles about Radio Art, Soundscape composition, Electroacoustic music, Radio Drama and SOUNDwalking.
We used theatrical elements to bring attention to what radio programmers do in the last conert, "Radio in Theatre." Toronto communicty radio programmers Kristiana Clemens and Don Zentner "performed" a radio show that included substantial works of Radio drama and Radio Art as their main programming (complete with live interviews with the artists/composers) alongside Radio Art versions of the weather, mystery shows, and news that were sampled from our library.
An unexpected outcome to the months activities was the acquisition of a twice-a-month time slot made available to New Adventures in Sound Art on CKLN radio called, of course, Deep Wireless. Have a listen sometime on the second and third Thursday of every month from 2 - 2:30 PM on 88.1-FM next time youre in the Toronto area.
SIGN WAVES (Phase I & II - June to November, 2002)
The Sign Waves installations series happened because of two separate individuals that needed help presenting their pieces. A series of installations grew from these two to include six different multi-media installations. We created another "Companion to" Booklet the Sign Waves Companion that included articles by all of the artists of these installations. The purpose of the Sign Waves Companion was to address the issue of installation art on a more general level by finding out from the artists themselves why they chose this medium to present their works and what were the important differences for them in producing works in this medium as opposed to other media that they had used in the past. All of the Sign Waves events had a PWYC (Pay What You Can) admission fee which made them accessable financially and provided a spring board to developing a stronger audience in the Toronto area both for sound art in general and for New Adventures in Sound Art as an organization. In all, the audience count for the installations was close to 400!
SOUND TRAVELS 2002 - Gibraltar Point, Toronto Island
Each year that we present Sound Travels, there is a different focus. This year, we combined acoustic performance with electronic and electroacoustic elements. We opened the event near the ferry docks with an improvisation by John D.S. Adams and Erin Donavan using John Littles sound sculpture "Sagromides of Venus." We then took this audience on a SOUNDwalk that ended at Gibraltar Point Centre for the Arts. With funding from our sponsors, we decided to make the event PWYC (Pay What You Can) and in the end it didnt hurt our box office at all as there were many audience members that "donated" significantly. The audience was encouraged to walk around the "space," the perimeter of which was delineated by the eight speakers used to diffuse the sound. As the concert progressed, many curious onlookers (some new to the island and just walking by) counted themselves in as audience members, many of whom enthusiastically added their names to our e-mail list to find out about future events. Sound Travels closed with a tour of the Sign Waves installations opening the same day at the Chemistry Building near the Water Filtration Plant and an old Reservoir (used for one of the installations as a resonating chamber).
SOUNDplay - a festival that puts SOUND on centre stage, Annex Theatre, Toronto
We are very excited about the upcoming concerts and workshops included in the SOUNDplay events (November, 2002). Th event opened with an interactive and immersive multi-media installation called "The Walls Are Still Weeping" (conceived by Tania Etienne) and will continue with two concerts in November. Artists included in the concerts are Christian Calon (Montreal-based sound and radio artist), Shelley Hirsch (New York vocalist/improviser), and a collaboration between U.K. musician/writer DAVID TOOP and Toronto experimental music giants Sarah Peebles and Nilan Perera. As with all our events, a significant portion is devoted to workshops and artist talks aimed to educate and contextualize the artists works both for the interested and the uninitiated.
We will of course continue to bring interesting and innovative sound art into the publics eye (and ears) through our events and festivals. We plan to make Deep Wireless and SOUNDplay annual events. The 2003 calendar - Deep Wireless in May, Sound Travels in August, SOUNDplay in November, and a new series of Sign Waves installations - will also include the publication of another "Companion to" booklet this time focussing on the diffusion of sound.
Looking back on an incredible year of electroacoustic and sound art acitivity in Toronto we feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with so many artists and to have networked with so many organizations in order to make it all possible!
Nadene Thériault-Copeland (Administrator) & Darren Copeland (Artistic Director)