This performance is part of an on-going project of the Lingnan University (LU) Cultural Studies Department in partnership with the University of California Humanities Research Institute (UCHRI). A workshop with the theme of “Noise, Sound, Music” is scheduled to be held at the Lingnan University Campus on 25 October, with resource persons from both LU and UCHRI.
The performance will have the theme of “Noise, Sound, Music.” There are three invited artists: Cheuk Wing Nam (Wing), Dennis Wong (aka Sin:Ned) and Nelson Hiu. Wing is a sound artist. One of her recent works was for a special exhibition at the Hong Kong Art Central in 2019. Sin:Ned is an electronic musician and a noisecian. He is the producer of re-records, and has been organizing Noise to Signal, one of the longest-running alternative music platforms in Hong Kong. Nelson Hiu studied ethnomusicology. He came to Hong Kong to teach at the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts in 1985. Since then, he has been performing multi-instrumental improvisation.
Each artist will have a solo performance, to exhibit stereotypical “noise,” “sound,” and “music.” These performances will progress into a relay, where the artists swap genres, to make a point about the “artificiality” of the categories. The artists will then merge into a full group composite performance. This will be done to bring the audience into a thicker sensorial space rather than leave them to dwell in cognitive listening (in other words, to bring them from “what am I listening to” to feeling-listening).
The performance will be titled (to be read as: one ear to hear). This title encapsulates the curatorial position that the difference between “noise,” “sound,” and “music” lies not on the sonic object but in the hearing perception, such that: with noise, one asks: "for how long or how loud can you listen?"; for sound: "what is it that I hear?"; and for music: "what is it saying?" This means then that a horn playing can be noise, sound, or music, depending on how the mind of the listener processes it.
To give time for a more contextual handle to the theme of the workshop in relation to the performance and/or the practice in general, a forum is arranged after the performance. This will be participated by Yang Yeung—founder of soundpocket and a member of the Hong Kong Art Appraisal Club; Nina Sun Eidsheim—a professor of Musicology at University of California and author of Sensing Sound, Singing and Listening as Vibrational Practice; the performers and Dayang Yraola, the curator of .
Nelson Hiu 邱立信, born and raised in Honolulu Hawaii, is a fourth-generation descendant of Chinese and Japanese immigrants. His interest in music, improvisation and self-discovery began while a secondary school student during the tumultuous late 60s and early 70s. He is a multi-instrumentalist. He studied ethno-musicology at the University of Hawaii. He has been living in Hong Kong since 1985 as Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts hired him to come to teach. Nelson has also been a founding member of many new music ensembles in Hawaii and Hong Kong including Nuclear Tan, the Pagan Babies, Gain Dangerous Visions, the Pet Project Hawaii, Uncarved Block, CIMG (Collective Improvisational Music Group), Little Red Truck, Dancing Stone and Yihk, and has collaborated extensively with dance and theatre. His music for dance has been performed in Hawaii, Arizona, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle, Utah, New York City, Switzerland, Japan, Hong Kong, Korea, Taiwan and the Mainland.
Dennis Wong 黃仲輝 aka Sin:Ned, is an improviser, experimentalist and noise practitioner from Hong Kong. He regards himself as a sonic medium and advocator of sonic mysticism in search of a direct and pure physical sound experience through chaos, errors and the extremes. He is the co-founder of Re-Records (www.re-records.com) and SECOND. Currently running the live performance series NOISE to SIGNAL and Kill The Silence Festival. He was a writer for the legendary Hong Kong alternative music magazine MCB (Music Colony Bi-Weekly). Among his latest performance were with dotolimpic Festival (Korea, 2017), Lausanne Underground Film & Music Festival (Switzerland, 2015, 2017), and Pop Im Ausland (Germany, 2016). His works have been selected and released by the infamous Belgium imprint Sub Rosa’s “An Anthology of Chinese Electronic Music” and “An Anthology of Noise & Electronic Music Vol. 7”.
Cheuk Wing Nam 卓穎嵐 (as known as Chang May Wing Joy) is an interdisciplinary artist who devotes to develop her artwork with new concepts of mixing sound and other media with the modern computer technology. She graduated from her Master degree of Visual Arts (Studio Art and Extended Media) in Hong Kong Baptist University. Cheuk has exhibited and/or performed in Sonic Environment 2016 (Brisbane, Australia), Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK, Switzerland), XXX Gallery, 22 Degrees North, Connecting Spaces, floating projects, Hong Kong Baptist University. She was selected to participate in Sonic Transmission Artist Exchange Project 2016 by Contemporary Musiking Hong Kong (CMHK). Recently, her works are selected in Art Central, Art Jakarta, and the upcoming Triennial in Asia Society New York Centre.
Nina Sun Eidsheim is Professor of Musicology at University of California-Los Angeles Herb Alpert School of Music. She authored Sensing Sound: Singing and Listening as Vibrational Practice (Duke UP, 2015) and The Race of Sound: Listening, Timbre, and Vocality in African American Music (Duke UP, 2019); co-edited Oxford Handbook of Voice Studies (2019); co-edited (with Josh Kun and Ronald Radano) of the Refiguring American Music book series for Duke University Press; recipient of the Mellon Foundation Fellowship, Cornell University Society of the Humanities Fellowship, the UC President’s Faculty Research Fellowship and the ACLS Charles A. Ryskamp Fellowship. She’s currently collaborating on a book and performance project with composer and trumpet player Wadada Leo Smith.
Yang Yeung 楊陽 is a writer of art and an independent curator. She founded the non-profit soundpocket in 2008 and is currently its Artistic Director. In 2015, she started independent project A Walk with A3 located at a back alley in Causeway Bay in Hong Kong to support the right of art to be in the streets and right of pedestrians to encounter art as a daily experience. Currently Yeung is a member of the international research network Institute for Public Art and contributes research writings on place-making public art projects regularly to the network’s conference and archive. She is member of the independent art critics collective Art Appraisal Club (HK) and the International Art Critics Association (HK). Most recently, she was in the art writing residency with Contemporary Art Stavanger in Norway. She currently teaches classics at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.
Dayang Yraola is an Assistant Professor at the University of the Philippines College of Fine Arts and a Lecturer at the College of Music. She was Archivist and Collections Manager at the U.P. Center for Ethnomusicology (2006-2015). As curator, she did the Jose Maceda Exhibit Series (2013, 2017-8); founded and curated the art residency/ exchange platforms Project Glocal (2011-5) and Composite Noise(s) (2015-9); and a number of other exhibits/ performances.
She has recently completed her PhD in Cultural Studies at Lingnan University Hong Kong, as a recipient of the competitive scholarship, Hong Kong Postgraduate Fellowship Scheme. Dayang’s research is on conditions of enablement of sound practices in Hong Kong and Manila.
Artwork by Armand Bacaltos, professor of Visual Communication at the University of the Philippine College of Fine Arts and founding member of the University of the Philippines Artists’ Circle Fraternity and Sorority.
Artwork medium: Mongol #1 graphite pencil on pharmaceutical give-away Post-it