In the spirit of the Scratch Orchestra 28 non musicians from Griffith barracks Educate Together primary school have, over the course of two workshops, been working with their teacher Cathal O Gorman and musician Paul Vogel to create their own composition. Using their own talents and whatever material that comes to hand, their composition has developed into a piece that is unique to this group. Exploring the possibilities of combining written text, song, silence, and rudimentary percussion, tensions arose between the performers in relation to different ideas of what "music" is. There has been no easy resolution of these tensions within the group and the third and final workshop will be a presentation of a composition still in flux.
Luke Fowlers current work at Temple Bar Gallery and studios, Pilgrimage from Scattered Points, is a film about the English composer Cornelius Cardew (1936-1981) and The Scratch Orchestra (1968-1973). The Scratch Orchestra was a non hierarchical group of musicians and non musicians who performed improvised works using non conventional instruments. The only full length recording of The Scratch Orchestra available is a performance of Cardew’s The Great Learning (1968–1970), a six hour choral work written for the Orchestra based on the Confucian scriptures. The work called for a large number of trained and untrained musicians to sing, speak, drum, perform actions and gestures, improvise and use conventional and unconventional sound sources.
Paul Vogel is an improvising musician based in Ireland. His original instruments were piano and clarinet, but in recent years, he has incorporated electronics into his set up. He was a member of the Bristol Musicians Co-op in the late seventies and is currently co-curator (with David Lacey) of i-and-e, an organisation which promotes improvised and contemporary music in Dublin. He has composed music for radio and contemporary dance groups and has worked and recorded with many musicians including Phil Durrant, Angharad Davies, Lee Patterson, Keith Rowe, David Lacey, Toshi Nakamura and Mark Wastell. He is also a member of the Swedish/Irish quartet Chipshop Music with Erik Carlsson, Martin Kuchen and David Lacey. He has released recordings on Cathnor, Confront and Homefront and Produped.
The exhibition Pilgrimage from scattered points is curated by Mary Cremin.