Last night saw the first sonADA (Sonic Arts Days in Aberdeen) with performances by Luca Nasciuti , Imogene Newland, Fiona Soe Paing and sonADA co-creator (along with Suk-Jun Kim) Francesco Sani.
Nasciuti’s solo set, his first performance in Aberdeen since arriving last month to commence his doctoral studies, consisting of undulating layers of sound with much more gestural material than I would have expected in a live set (for me, this is a good thing…), followed by the frenetic, breathless, consctructive-destructive-reconstructive performance for two dancers from Newland, Soe Paing’s yearning audiovisualvocal upbeat to her presentation next week at CineWorld, Union Square and Sani’s haunting multi-layered violin tones accompanying desolate images were all superb…and there’s more this evening from Suk-Jun Kim, Dæmons, Ross Whyte and Colin Austin.
Something else happened last night, I think. Recently, here’s been a huge amount of interest in creativity and culture in the North East of Scotland. This week’s RGU/City Council Conference Towards a Creative Future, for instance, started the discussion on many issues, from spaces for artists to helping to define the cultural narrative of the region. During the bidding process for Aberdeen’s City of Culture bid you would often hear denials that there was anything interesting going on in the city – the 50+ people present at last night’s event are clear evidence that there is. What we do need to do, however, is to make sure that more people know about it. That reluctance for NEasterners to shout from the rooftops about what they do needs to change and we need to help lift up the stones all over the city to see and hear what is going on underneath, because it’s as experimental, interesting and good as anywhere else in the UK.