The experimental audio-theatre piece O-B-A-F-G – produced by the Culture & Review on Phonic FM team and Blind Ditch, and first aired on Phonic FM in May 2015 – has been selected for broadcast as part of Radiophrenia Glasgow on 1 September 2016.
Radiophrenia Glasgow is a temporary art radio station – a two-week exploration into current trends in sound and transmission arts. Broadcasting live from CCA Glasgow, the station aims to promote radio as an art form, encouraging challenging and radical new approaches to the medium.
O-B-A-F-G is a proto-immersive audio-theatre work by Ronald Duncan from 1964. It examines the tensions between scientific and spiritual beliefs about the ‘birth’ of matter and our relationship with the Earth. This re-imagining explores the possibilities offered by current digital technologies to expand the spaces in which the piece is performed.
This version of O-B-A-F-G was first performed in the Black Box Studio at Exeter Phoenix and broadcast simultaneously on Phonic FM on 15 May 2015, as part of the NOSE2015 art festival. It was produced by Blind Ditch and the Culture & Review on Phonic FM team, with support from the Ronald Duncan Literary Foundation, Exeter City Council, Exeter Phoenix and Phonic FM.
The Ronald Duncan Literary Foundation exists to encourage and support creative excellence in the arts, especially poetry, drama and literature and to sustain interest and research in the work associated with its namesake, the poet and playwright, Ronald Duncan. Find the Duncan archive at the University of Exeter, part of their Special Collections of South West based writers.
You can create your own DIY happening to accompany the broadcast:
- Load up the accompanying video
- Listen to the audio – through headphones is best
- Assemble a pile of random household objects in the glow of your computer screen
- Pull the curtains, turn off all the lights – you want it as dark as the beginning of time…
- After hearing the words “then then then then then…” press play on the video…
Listen to Radiophrenia Glasgow online: http://radiophrenia.scot/listen/
O-B-A-F-G features the voices of Dartington College of Arts and University of Exeter students and alumni:
Uta is an inter-disciplinary artist and typewriter collector. She studied theatre and visual arts at Dartington College of Arts. Her current work is in performance art poetry, lead singer in the band Square Bomb and collaborates in the theatre group Hand in Glove. By night she likes to stick collages and words on paper, write poetic texts and lyrics. And sends mail art into the world.
Belinda is a freelance copywriter and editor with a focus on the arts. She is currently a post-grad student at the University of Exeter.
Dugald is a Dartington alumnus and a NZ/UK actor and visual artist.
Robert is a cultural anthropologist and audio/video/IT technician living in Hungary. His main interest is community living and alternative therapies (including Recall Healing and Metamorphic Technique). He studied at Schumacher College and Bristol Old Vic.
Eunjoo Han is a theatre performer from Seoul, South Korea. She gained an MFA in theatre at the University of Exeter in 2013. Eunjoo has worked in theatre nationally and internationally and is the creator of Baram Theatre, an international theatre troupe.
Alice is a Dartington graduate based in Bristol. She is also a part of Residence Art Collective. She has recently performed her first solo piece as part of a showcasing event supported by SCPF (Solo Contemporary Performance Forum).
Fin Irwin is freelance producer, performer and programmer. He programmes theatre for The House in Plymouth, produces work across the South West and is artistic director and performer with Nuts and Volts Theatre. He co-founded the Bike Shed Theatre in Exeter in 2010. www.finirwin.co.uk
Jason is an alumnus of Dartington College of Arts. He graduated from the Performance Writing course in 2000. Jason divides his time between fantasies of defiance and acts of compliance, in Asia.
Felix Bear Lane
Felix Lane co-runs Open Barbers, a hairdressing and social space for all genders and sexualities.
Aged 8 loves sports and art and drama and plays the piano and likes making up tunes with his drum. He would like to be in a film some time soon. He’s got lovely friends and a good life. He likes cake and biscuits and his dad’s special vegetable soup. His parents enjoyed a lot of great art-making experiences on the Dartington College campus.
Aged 12 plays piano and violin and spends a lot of time drawing. Lena particularly enjoyed the experience of eating coconut curry in the Dartington Hall gardens at the final Dartington festival and closure of Dartington College of Arts, 16th – 20th June 2010.
Volkhardt is a German artist and Exeter resident since 2002. His work spans a variety of media, collaborating with people and places to approach major themes shaping contemporary British society, currently through the prism of this one particular city and the surrounding landscapes. He is a member of Blind Ditch who were company in residence at Dartington College of Arts 2004-06, and is currently running the artist led space TOPOS www.toposexeter.uk in Exeter city centre.
Graduating with an MA in Devised Theatre from Dartington College of Arts in 2000, Cat became a member of the arts collective Blind Ditch as performer/devisor, workshop leader and project manager and producer on a multitude of cross disciplinary adventures. You may have also seen her appearing in films by Clive Austin and performances of the traditional English dance troupe, Morris Offspring.
Phil Smith (Crab Man, Mytho) is a performance-maker, writer and ambulatory researcher. He specialises in creating performances related to walking, site-specificity, mythogeographies and counter-tourism. He writes and performs ‘mis-guided tours’, gently subverting sites of heritage. He is a core member of site-based arts collective Wrights & Sites, a co-author of the company’s various ‘mis-guides’ including ‘An Exeter Mis-Guide’ and ‘A Mis-Guide To Anywhere’, and is presently working on their next publication: ‘Architect Walkers’. He has recently been performing with Jane Mason in ‘Life Forces’, devising and performing ‘Calton Hill Constellations’ with Siriol Joyner for Artlink Edinburgh and Lothians, and developing a ‘common dance for threatened subjectivities’ with Melanie Kloetzel. He has recently finished a spell as Site Artist for Tracing the Pathway’s ‘Groundwork’ project in Milton Keynes and is developing a new idea for a festival in the city in 2017. Phil’s publications include ‘Walking’s New Movement’ (2015), ‘On Walking’, ‘Enchanted Things’, and the novel ‘Alice’s Dérives in Devonshire’ (all 2014), ‘Counter-Tourism: The Handbook’ and, with Simon Persighetti, ‘A Sardine Street Box of Tricks’ (both 2012) and ‘Mythogeography’ (2010), and as a co-writer ‘Walking, Writing and Performance’ (2009, Intellect). He is presently writing a book on ‘Zombie Walking’. He is also the company dramaturg and, with Paul Stebbings, co-founder (in 1980) of TNT (Munich), the world’s leading company touring English language theatre to non-anglophone countries. As a playwright over 120 of his plays and adaptations have received professional productions and have been seen by over 3 million people. He is an Associate Professor (Reader) at Plymouth University.
This work has been created with the support of Exeter Phoenix and the Ronald Duncan Literary Foundation.
Jem is a movement and dance artist and a former Dartington student. A director of Run Ragged Dance, he is currently touring a duet, Transition, with his 12 year old daughter.
Ella Turk-Richards is a vocal coach and composer, choir leader, workshop leader and singer songwriter, performing with various groups for 20 years and solo for the last 9 years. Ella graduated with a BA (Hons) in Music from Dartington College of Arts in 2005, and has been teaching singing since 2007. Ella has been incorporating the Estill model into her practice as a Vocal Coach over the last year and a half with great results.
The production team:
Paula Crutchlow – Creative Director
Paula is an independent artist and performance maker who co-authors and directs live events across a variety of forms. Her work with Devon based collective Blind Ditch creates collaborative and unexpected happenings in everyday spaces; often using participatory approaches and digital medias to engage varied publics as active spectators and citizen artists in the becoming of the event. Paula graduated with an MA in Devised Theatre from Dartington College of Arts in 2000, where she was an Associate Lecturer until 2010. She is currently Artistic Adviser for storytelling production company Adverse Camber, collaborating with cultural geographer Ian Cook on the Museum of Contemporary Commodities and an ESRC funded PhD researcher in critical human geography at the University of Exeter. More about her work can be found at www.blindditch.org www.moccguide.net www.make-shift.net www.thiscityscentre.net
Stuart Crewes – Producer
Stuart Crewes is an artist living in Exeter. He makes sound work as antisocial services and visual work as absolute catastrophe. He produces an annual fringe-arts event in the city: NOSE. Stuart is the Vice Chair of Exeter Cultural Partnership and steers the Exeter Visual Arts Forum. He also presents downstream, an art and sound programme, and is a co-producer of Culture & Review on Phonic FM.
Carla Hayes – Stage management
Carla is a producer, project manager and performer living in Exeter, Devon, with more than twenty years’ experience in the events, creative and performance industries. Carla has embedded herself in the performance and art industry in Exeter. Carla established herself in Exeter through the Cultural Olympiad celebrations of the Exeter Torch Relay Parade and the Weymouth Sailing Olympics Celebrations: Battle for the Winds. Working on creative projects Carla embraces her passions for facilitation, performance and media.
John Wigzell – Sound Editor
John co-produces Culture & Review on Phonic FM, along with various other arts- and community-focussed programming.
Listen again to the work, along with an accompanying documentary, here…
Image credit: Milky Way @ Pantai Kelanang by Jeffery Goh, licensed under Creative Commons CC BY-NC 2.0 (https://www.flickr.com/photos/unknown_obj/7615172800/in/photostream/)