Exploring the voice across arts and sciences, linking practitioners and thinkers, in an interdisciplinary network. A space in which the voice is mediated, echoed, added to, discussed, expanded, multiplied, questioned and discovered.
The Voice Laboratory founded by Amy Cunningham in 2009 is an interdisciplinary, intra-University network of practitioners and academics exploring the voice across arts and sciences. The Voice Laboratory encompasses two strands; one is a research network, which develops ideas through discussions, presentations and debate. The other is an ensemble, which brings together artists, academics and students to explore the voice in various contexts through an emphasis on process and collective practice.
With the support of an University of Brighton Research Innovation Award in 2009 the Voice Laboratory formed an initial research cluster led by Amy Cunningham and Mikhail Karikis (University of Brighton) with colleagues across the faculty and from other academic institutions including composer, performer and visual artist Sam Belinfante, (Slade School of Fine Art, University College London), computer music composer and performer Nick Collins, (University of Sussex), composer, performer and sound artist Conall Gleeson (University of Brighton), mezzo-soprano singer Lore Lixenberg and composer Claudia Molitor. A series of workshops and a symposium in 2009 explored themes such as the 'impossible voice', the cultural and physical implications of pitch shifting, and the relationship between, body, voice and the score.
The Voice Laboratory network has invited guest artists and researchers from across the arts and sciences to contribute practical experiments, ideas and discussions to reflect upon past and current research and to create new insights in the field of interdisciplinary voice. Partners and communities working with Voice Laboratory to date include: Soundwaves Festival, Creative Campus Initiative and ensemble Scratch the Surface.
The Voice Laboratory Ensemble is an important platform for supporting emerging interdisciplinary voice practices and has led to co-production of works with artists, academics and students including The Musical 100 Metres and The Musical 100 Metres: Replay (2010), funded by Arts Council of England, Grant for the Arts, and Creative Campus Initiative. In 2011 Rounds: A Vocal Process Intervention, was presented by the ensemble as part of ‘Anniversary – an act of memory Act 31: a collective and multilingual recitation from memory of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, by Monica Ross and Co-recitors, Brighton Festival ‘Freedom Picnic’, 29 May 2011.
The Voice Laboratory aims:
The Voice Laboratory is funded by the Research Innovation Award, University of Brighton.
Photo credits: Symposium photographs by Jen Sanders, Voice Laboratory Ensemble Musical 100 Metres & Rounds: A Vocal Process Intervention photographs by Darren Cool. Rounds: A Vocal Process Intervention video by motionandcolour.com