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Violin Video
a page of performance movies
Slide Fence at Ewerre 15/6/04
Fences come in all shapes and sizes but this fence 300 kilometers south of Alice Springs takes some figuring out. It seems that many of the original wooden fence posts were burnt and replaced by metal ones. However the fencemen left the top remains of each post still attached to the wire, creating inadvertently a kind of bottle neck slide guitar mechanism. Despite the clearly audible acoustic sound, for this recording one contact microphone was attached to the free floating former-fence post, and one contact mic was attached to a more functional post anchored in the red sand of central Australia.

This is an extract of a much longer solo improvisation.

Tenor Violin at Itirkawara 8/6/04
Also known as Rainbow Valley, this place is staggeringly beautiful and contains a number of natural rock amphitheatres. Covering the countless scattered piles of stones are assortments of wind carved hieroglyphics. At sunset the huge cliff, confrontingly placed at the end of an arena sized claypan, turns bright scarlet, then purple. Unsurprisingly this site has been used for corroborees by the Arrernte people for many thousands of years.

This is an extract of a much longer solo improvisation, the sound was recorded direct to camera. The tenor violin was built by Harry Vatiliotis of Sydney.

MIDI Bow 11/2/06
Part of the Hyperstring project, the bow to MIDI system is featured for the last time on tour - prior to its retirement.

Recorded on stage at Mills College, California as part of the David Tudor Residency 2006. Basically the pressure and movements of one bow control the pitch, velocity and panning of the other amplified bow via MIDI. There are a number of amplified modified bows which are used in this set up - plus the occasional use of string samples such as cello or banjo.

Veryan Weston & Jon Rose 14/5/05
From The Temperament Project. This is part of the concert given at The Brussel's Museum of Musical Instruments. Veryan was featured on both harpsichord and fortepiano - tuned equal and in meantone temperament. Violins in various scordatura were used, but not in this particular extract. The video was shot by Konstanze Binder.

The People's Music 14/4/01
Performed at Violins in the Outback on Wogarno Station in the middle of outback Western Australia as part of the Totally Huge New Music Festival - it turned out to be quite a night. An audience of over 700 gathered itself together to witness the second coming of Mao Zedong - or to have a good time. There is a CD of The People's Music and more information on all the Violin Factory projects. This extract is taken from the feature movie made by Tanja Visosevic.

Barbed Wire Warm Up Exercises 29/3/05
For years I assumed that it might be OK bowing standard fence wire but there was no way that I was going to start playing music on a barbed wire fence. 10 years ago I realised my error. Simultaneously invented in France and the USA in the 1860s, there are over 570 different designs of patented barbed wire. In fact in the first two decades of its existence, there were many hard fought legal battles about who invented what and when. Barbed wire has the advantage of two strands instead of one, and automatically adjusts itself to changes of temperature. When heat expands the two wires, the twist simply loosens, and when cold contracts them, the twist tightens, all without really altering the overall length of the wire. Quite an idea, almost beautiful. Then there's the barbs and hey presto we are overwhelmed by the received images; the concentration camp; first world war trenches; the defence of property; the image of barbed wire is now a sexy staple of the advertising industry, not to say contemporary art. In Australia, a country of immigrants, we use barbed wire to incarcerate those who have escaped oppression to reach our shores. So we fence them in, in order to stop them coming here - so goes the logic of those in authority.

Non violin playing people have often suggested that the violin is a tough instrument to play because, unlike the piano, you can't see where the notes are. One aspect of the barbed wire fence that appeals to me is that it becomes very clear where the notes are - if you miss'em it's quite painful. Also the scale articulated by the barbs is extremely unorthodox and about as far as you can get from the equal tempered scale upon which most western music is played. But the tyranny of the equal tempered scale is not a subject upon which we should dwell in the middle of an Australian desert.

The Australian Saw Orchestra 6/10/05
Performed as part of the Pannikin Project at The Melbourne Festival, the occasion marked a significant re-discovery for this traditional bowed, backyard instrument. The compositional instructions were simple enough but the results were sonically quite complex.

Chainsaw Tribute 6/10/05
Continuing our saw theme as part of the Pannikin Project, this was a tribute to WACO 'The West Australian Chainsaw Orchestra', sadly no longer with us. It's safe to say that the art of counterpoint and chainsaws have had little in common until The Melbourne Festival 2005.

Viola and Revolving Speaker Performance circa 1982

Evironmental factors being considered an important aspect of the Relative Violin Project, here is some archive footage of a performance that took place in Taylor Square, Sydney, in the early 1980s. It features a 7 string wheeling viola, portable amplification, and a revolving speaker. Whatever happened to the guy who was twirling the speaker? My thanks to him.

MIDI Bow 9/4/03
Part of the Hyperstring project, this bow to MIDI system is nearly 20 years old and now in its third development stage.

Live sampling and 'scratching' of the bow is also possible using Steim's LISA programme controlled by two accelerometers placed on each of the bowing arms.

This clip comes from Australia's main daytime TV chat and sell show, 'Mornings with Kerri Anne'. It's probably the first and last time that an interactive bow appeared in such an iconic slice of the mainstream.

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