Athens, Ga. – Ideas for Creative Exploration, a University of Georgia interdisciplinary initiative for advanced research in the arts, will present Our New Silence, an experimental world music project and performance involving reinterpretations of traditional Indonesian music by local and UGA musicians.
Our New Silence will be performed on Saturday, April 18, at 8:30 p.m. in Ramsey Hall and will feature live performances, pre-recorded music pieces and ambient sound recordings by a variety of musicians. The event is open free to the public.
Performers will be various local and UGA musicians who are remixing, reinterpreting or abstracting traditional music recordings from Java, Indonesia, produced by UGA Asian studies instructor Kai Riedl.
“This is a rare chance to hear some of Athens’s most creative musicians, learn about an unfamiliar part of the Islamic world and enter the soundscape of another country in a particularly Athens fashion,” said Riedl.
The goal of Our New Silence is to provide Athens musicians with tracks and loops of Indonesian music to let them rework, reinterpret and personalize a palette of new sounds and thus create new music.
Riedl has been recording music in Indonesia off and on from 2003 to 2006 and in the process hearing the possibilities of creating new music from his collected sounds as a means creating an abstracted Indonesian soundscape for the community.
Through his digital recordings he has been able to provide new sounds and song structures for himself and such musicians as Kyle Dawkins of the Georgia Guitar Quartet (and a UGA guitar instructor); Heather McIntosh of The Instruments; Page Campbell of the bands Hope for Agoldensummer and Creepy;and performance artists Suny Lyons and Killick, to just name a few.
Riedl teaches classes on Asian religions, Buddhist ritual, and music in religious culture in the religion department in UGA’s Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. He has received several grants to study music and religious culture in Indonesia. As a musician, Riedl was a founding member of the band Macha,has contributed tracks for the band Tuatara (collaborating with members of R.E.M and poet Coleman Barks) and has developed the Javasounds recording project.
Also involved is Jean Kidula, an associate professor of music and ethnomusicology at UGA. Kidula teaches African Music, African-American music and the survey of music cultures of the world. She also is active in the performance of religious music, African choral music and the medieval and renaissance vocal repertory.