'The whale moves in a sea of sound:
Shrimps snap, plankton seethes,
Fish croak, gulp, drum their air-bladders,
And are scrutinised by echo-location,
A light massage of sound
Touching the skin'
- Heathcote Williams, Whale Nation
[whalesong] is a subversive, submersive sonic journey about the noise in the oceans. It is a sound play on choice, voice and our impending doom. It is a human-computer duet told between a performer and a machine learning system. It has a little whale balloon and a gargle-along theme song. Created by sound artist and technologist XVelastín, [whalesong] is unpredictable, passionate and moving. Its structure is inspired by the speech and song of whales; its content a mixture of mythologies, scientific research and intersectional research. It is a celebration of the diversity of the sound in the seas, and a challenge to humanity's desire to own the natural world.
After its initial development for the 2018 Camden Fringe at The Monkey House in Finsbury Park, London, [whalesong] is being re-developed with the support of residencies with the Pervasive Media Studios in Bristol and Theatre Deli in London.
2020 will see [whalesong] perform at various locations around the UK. Find details under 'Upcoming Shows'.
XVelastín is a British-Chilean sound artist focussing on voice, technology and climate change. He performs often in solo and collaborative works specialising in finding new modes of expression, usually using a mixture of experimentalism, musical training and computer programming. His work as a sound designer for theatre has included shows for the Royal Exchange Theatre, Leeds Playhouse and the prestigious Cambridge Greek Play. His sound design portfolio can be found here: XVelastín Theatre Sound.