Brookes Professor showcases sonic artwork at international arts festival in Malaysia

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Ray Lee's Chorus 800x450

Award-winning composer and lecturer in Oxford Brookes University’s School of Arts, Professor Ray Lee will tour his successful sonic artwork Chorus at the George Town Festival in Penang, Malaysia throughout August.

Chorus was developed from his critically-acclaimed sonic artwork Siren, which has been performed over 120 times at key venues across the globe. 

Since its creation in 2013, Chorus has toured at festivals both in the UK and around the world. Commenting about Chorus, Ray said: “It’s a very similar principle to Siren, but what we have done is make the tripods much, much bigger - 5 metres tall.

I think that because of its nature, because the arms move and because of its lights, it involves people in a piece of contemporary music that they might not otherwise listen to.

Professor Ray Lee, Oxford Brookes University

“It has been designed to work outdoors in all weather conditions and what that enables us to do is reach bigger audiences with what is effectively a piece of contemporary music. I think that because of its nature, because the arms move and because of its lights, it involves people in a piece of contemporary music that they might not otherwise listen to.”

George Town Festival is a month-long celebration of arts, culture, heritage and community showcasing world-class collaborations from international and local artists alike. 

Ray creates spinning, whirling and pendulous sounds installations and performances that explore “circles of ether” – the invisible forces that surround us. His immersive and mesmerising works aim to make contemporary music accessible and engaging for a wide audience. 

Earlier this month, Ray brought his sound performance RING OUT from Hull, City of Culture 2017, for a series of performances at London’s Southbank Centre for the New Music Biennial festival, commissioned by Oxford Contemporary Music and supported by a PRS Foundation New Music Biennial award and the Arts Council of England.

Ring Out by Ray Lee 800x450RING OUT is an outdoor musical and visual spectacle composed for electronically generated sound bells, each swinging from a giant metal tower. The composition builds a series of tonal pitches into a constantly evolving texture of pulsed tones created by the swinging of the bell-speakers by a team of local bell-ringers. 

Ray is an inaugural Professor of Sound Art in the top-ranking School of Arts at Oxford Brookes University where Publishing and Fine Art are ranked 3rd and 4th in The Guardian University League Tables 2018. He teaches MA Sound Arts, is the School of Arts Postgraduate Director and supervises practice based arts students in sound and contemporary arts practice.

More about Ray’s research and creation of sonic art masterpieces can be found on the University’s research webpages

Pictures: Ray Lee's Chorus (top), photo credit Nathan Cox, and Ring Out (bottom).