Yevgeny Murzin – Master of the Synthesiser
BBC World Service
31st March 2018
In the oppressive political climate of Soviet Russia, a unique piece of Russian musical history was made: Yevgeny Murzin, a brilliant engineer, built one of the world’s first synthesisers. It was called the A.N.S. and was built largely in secret, with little access to electronic parts.
Pioneering Russian composers Stanislav Kreichi, Alfred Schnittke and Edison Denisov made use of the A.N.S’s otherworldly tones, which brought to mind Soviet space exploration, and were most famously used in Eduard Artemiev’s soundtrack for Tarkovsky’s ‘Solaris’.
Keyboardist and Russophile Jon Ouin travels to Moscow to interview Artemiev, Kreichi, and other contemporaries of Murzin, and hears an extraordinary demonstration of this incredible instrument. He speaks to leading synth musicians including Suzanne Ciani, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith and Will Gregory for whom the A.N.S. is an authentic, original sound.
BBC Radio 4
9th April 2018
AL Kennedy revels in epiphanies. Every novel is supposed to include an epiphany. Movies depend on them – the Hollywood model for a plot always involves suffering bringing about learning and transformation. Real life is more complicated, of course. But real life does provide epiphanies. We learn from experience, because if we don’t it tends to destroy us. And sometimes reality is too beautiful to ignore.
Epiphanies aren’t reserved for mystics, or heroes – we’re all the centre of our own story, our own adventure, and we all have moments, if we reflect, when we’ve learned something that lit us, got us through, changed us forever.
These moments are the ones we pass on, the insights we give to friends; moments that help define us and the way we choose to be in the world.
Big Drums on Little Carriacou
BBC Radio 4
1st May 2018
Zakia Sewell returns to the home of her grandparents, Carriacou, a tiny island off the coast of Grenada, to learn about the island’s Big Drum tradition – an African ritual passed down through generations since the slavery era.
Her great grandfather belonged to a Big Drum group called the Lambert Brothers, who performed an African drumming ritual for the Queen when she visited Grenada in 1965. She’ll talk to drummers and drum-makers who keep the tradition alive, and with local historians and folklorists on the tiny island, she learns how the Eastern Caribbean has maintained its connection to Africa for over 300 years.
The Legacy of Windrush
BBC Radio 4
1st & 8th June 2018
In a pair of programmes to mark the 70th anniversary of the docking of the Empire Windrush, Hugh Muir explores what it means to be British Caribbean today. Recorded in Britain and the Caribbean, Hugh acts as a pivot between the different generations, drawing out the shifting sense of connection to the ‘homeland’ and the ‘adopted land’.
Behind Hugh is his old dad, now living in Jamaica, who he visits in the first programme. He arrived to Britain on a mission to better himself and return home in the 1950s.
In front of him, are the younger British Caribbeans: his daughters, the producer Zakia and others. In the second programme he asks whether the legacy and experience of the Windrush generation is still important to them today. Through their passions, work, aspirations and preoccupations we’ll hear if there is a strong connection to the language, culture and heritage of the Caribbean, and how younger people experience this in Britain today.
Alison Turnbull: Butterflies
BBC Radio 4
18th June 2018
Colombian-born artist Alison Turnbull and Blanca Huertas, curator of butterflies at the Natural History Museum, set out on a mission to the region of Base Choco in Colombia. The region has the most butterflies and moths in the world, and while Blanca seeks new species variations, Alison considers the symmetry, mimicry, movement and scale of these incredible insects.
It’s the trip of a lifetime, though the contradictions of the area are impossible to ignore: while the region has suffered from isolation due to decades of bandits and drug protectionism, its remoteness has allowed for an ecology in which butterflies thrive. But the developers are moving in…
Alison and Blanca’s journey takes in ecology, conservation and the collaboration of art and science.
Aarhus European City of Culture 2017
Conversations in Time
‘Conversations in Time’ brings together an audiobook of Suzi Gablik’s important book Conversations Before the End of Time, first published in 1995, along with a series of new conversations inspired by Gablik’s original dialogues. The book was driven by what she believed was a crisis point for art, humanity and the environment.
These conversations and the audiobook of Gablik’s original book are distributed within the Public Programme ‘Conversations in Time’, part of the European Capital of Culture Aarhus 2017.
“Aarhus 2017 is delighted to partner with Cast Iron Radio to bring ‘Conversations in Time’ to people across the world via podcasting. These specially curated conversations open up ideas and stories that interrogate and contemplate the place and role of art and creative pursuits as we push into the next decades of the 21st century.” Juliana Engberg, Programme Director
Listen here: www.conversationsintime.eu