30 April 2014
In March Heads Together Productions were awarded a Community Media Association commission under the Modulate 2014 programme to create a work of sound art to be broadcast during Le Tour in Yorkshire.
Modulate 2014 encourages community radio broadcasters to explore new approaches to formats and a truly creative approach to broadcasting. Heads Together were successful in 2012 in a similar commission in partnership with Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival. Working with musician and composer, Claudia Mollitor and a group of young musicians we created a kind of interactive musical hangman which was a great success—you can still listen again to //Playback
For Modulate 2014 we have been even more ambitious. We are continuing our partnership with Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival but this time we are bringing three sound artists to work alongside three writers who are all part of the Writing Squad—the writer development programme for young writers in the North of England.
The starting point for the collaboration is Le Tour in Yorkshire—the first two days of this year's Tour de France cycle race are coming to Yorkshire. Le Grand Départ leaves from Leeds on July 5th and the next day the route goes down the Holme Valley and up one of the biggest challenges for the cyclists—the climb up into the Peak District at Holme Moss. So, with our two community radio stations—ELFM in Leeds and Two Valleys Radio (one of the valleys is the Holme Valley) we are pretty much ideally placed!
So—at the end of April we brought together our three writers—Jasmine Simms, Charley Miles and Ruby Lawrence—together with our three sound artists/designers—Ed Heaton, Karen Lauke and Greta Eacott. We had a great day talking through ideas about sound, writing and cycling and even went up to the top of Holme Moss for a picnic lunch (although I have to admit we drove rather than cycled!)
By the end of the day our writers and sound artists paired off and they will be working together in May and June to create three separate features for broadcast in the week running up to Le Grand Départ. Of course we will be broadcasting them on ELFM and Two Valleys Radio but we will be working with CMA to get more broadcast opportunities at community radio stations across the country—after all this is one time when everyone will be interesting to find out the local story behind an international sporting event in Yorkshire.