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Musick in the Practice, hath been well pursued, and in good Variety; but in the Theory, and especially in the yielding of the Causes of the Practick, very weakly; being reduced into certain Mystical subtilties, and not much truth. We shall therefore, after our manner, joyn the Contemplative and Active Part together.
Francis Bacon, Sylva Sylvarum, 1626

We've just had fantastic news. Arts Council England will be supporting our new project for 2015. Along with a generous grant from The Golsoncott Foundation and the amazing opportunities offered by a week of research and development at Aldeburgh Music the next few weeks are full of possibilities.

We start our research and development for Sound House on the 23rd of February in Aldeburgh. We have six days to explore a rich vein of material. Our research will focus on Francis Bacon's inspiring reflections on the nature of sound and his utopian vision for a sound world which included:

divers instruments of music likewise to you unknown, some sweeter than any you have ... harmonies which you have not, of quarter-sounds, and lesser slides of sounds, (as well as other magical effects including) ... divers strange and artificial echoes, reflecting the voice many times, and as it were tossing it. 

We are really looking forward to collaborating with
Jon Nicholls, sound designer and composer, to create some of these wonders using 21st century electronic means combined with a distinctly 17th century spirit of enquiry.

Francis Bacon

This investigation will be set within a musical context which would have been familiar to Bacon himself. We'll be exploring some exquisite 17th century English music and arranging it for a unique consort, gathered from the many instruments we are taking to the residency: harps, viola bastarda, violone, dulcimers, nyckelharpa, Hardanger violin, renaissance guitar and even a hurdy gurdy. Our newly-acquired and magnificent tromba marina, which is a full two metres long, will also be making an appearance.