A project developed by Virtual Migrants in Sheffield (UK), Interplay Now enables new musical collaborations across different cultures.
Interplay Now a new project bringing together very different musical genres, cultures and communities to create new music, and to encourage deeper understanding of the background to that music both artistically and socially using educative journalism. The UK is rich in having a very diverse range of cultures and the innovative possibilities through bringing us together are mostly underused. The project involved a significant training programme – in music, video, webcasting and journalism (also to a lesser degree, photography).
Interplay Now has it’s own website www.interplaynow.org – head over there for all up-to-date information with full details about the project. The project aims to bridge divides, generate artistic innovation and develop organisational skills among local people. We have also developed three micro-commissions connecting unusual pairs of Sheffield based musicians. Interplay Now hopes to catalyse the future evolution and understanding of musical crossover. We aim to use educative webcasting to develop audiences and influence musical and creative practice.
Interplay Now Collective
Our project’s starting point was with a diverse group of people mostly who arrived as refugees, who created original material to perform, talk about and webcast a range of music created during the weekly project sessions. This is the Interplay Now Collective.
The first live presentation on 20th June 2019 at Theatre Deli preceded a performance by Avital Raz at Sheffield’s Migration Matters festival during Refugee Week, more details at www.migrationmattersfestival.co.uk/full-programme-2019-b/my-jerusalem . The next was a dedicated performance of their own at Theatre Deli on 1st August 2019 – InterplayNow Collective LIVE with Arash Sabet.
Artist Commissions to create original crossover music
Six artists were commissioned to create new music in three pairs crossing over their very different genres and cultural backgrounds in unusual ways. The final presentation of the commissioned pieces took place at an event ‘Greater Than The Sum‘ on 9th October 2019 – a truly spellbinding and exhilarating event.
In 2019, the commissioned artist pairs were:
Mina Salama and Kate Griffin
Two musicians grounded in their traditions, Arabic, UK folk and Bluegrass, playing instruments derived from some of the oldest in the world. With Oud, Nay and Kawala flutes, Qanoon and Armenian Duduk, Guitar, Banjo and voice as their palette.
Shu Jiang and Dirty Freud
A Shangai trained musicologist and expert player of Chinese zithers meets a British DJ and electro-dub producer of Caribbean heritage. Possibly the most radical combination of the evening combining delicacy and drive, grace and guts.
LNA and Avital Raz
A Scandinavian in Yorkshire making melancholic electronic sounds meets experimental folk music from a Sheffield based singer via Varanasi and Jerusalem . Two voices and an array of instruments including guitar, tanpura, and keyboards.
PLUS… The Interplay Now Collective
Music inspired by refugee members’ roots and journeys from Sudan, Syria, DRCongo, and the UK. Expect uplifting narratives, sung in a variety of languages, and media journalism creating a vivid cultural context through video projections.
>> More about Interplay Now
We need your support to build this new project further – please SUBSCRIBE to our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/channel/UC3ujhN7adteCnU7Fa9g4WvQ and also please like our Facebook and Twitter pages.
Interplay Now is an amazing project run by Virtual Migrants in collaboration with Sheffield Refugee Council. We are also generously supported by SADACCA Studios who provide a fantastic space for us to work in. Other partners include Theatre Deli (Sheffield) and Koni Music, we are also grateful for financial support from Awards For All and the Arts Council England.