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Last Day of March – Sonorous Matter & Siberian Stories

March 27, 2016

On the 31 March the Museum is open for After Hours, where there will be two events where writers and musicians have been inspired by the Museum’s collections.

Siberian Stories


An evening presentation by Rebecca Hurst, Manchester Museum’s Researcher in Residence. Inspired by the Museum’s 2014-2015 Siberia exhibition, her work has focused on creating and uncovering stories from the Russian Far East. She will read poems and discuss her research on Kate Marsden – a Victorian nurse and explorer, who made a remarkable and controversial trip to Vilyusk in 1897 – and on the fabulous world of the Russian wonder tale.


SiberianStories Drawing 2

Sonorous Matter: with Common Objects


When Oskar Fischinger met John Cage he talked about a spirit that lives inside each of the world’s objects, and said that what we need to do to liberate that spirit is to brush past the object and draw forth its sound. The musicians from Common Objects will each research and engage with collections from three museums: Manchester Museum, Pitt Rivers Museum and Durham University Oriental Museum. They will identify objects that once made sound to form the basis of new scores to be performed by the ensemble. Ranging from the Neolithic to the present day, the objects will form a creative resource for re-imagining sonic possibilities.

Common Object

This will result in six new commissions, one by each member of the ensemble. The museums have been chosen for their breadth of specialties: Science and Technology, the Oriental and Postcolonial, Anthropology and the Neolithic. In engaging with artifacts, Sonorous Matter will seek to identify and stimulate new relationships and resonances between the composers’ sound work and the objects’ histories.

This project takes contemporary music out of the concert hall and presents it in an innovative setting to reach new audiences that would not necessarily have encountered this form of music. Musicians John Butcher – saxophones Angharad Davies -violin Rhodri Davies – electric harp Lina Lapelyte – violin Lee Patterson – amplified devices and processes Pat Thomas – electronics

Funded by ACE and presented with Sound and Music, the National Charity for New Music

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