a collaborative authorship of interdisciplinary poetic textual and visual practices

*aka cris cheek and Kirsten Lavers

far from silicon fen

soundtrack from an image-text-sound work for the web browser interface that playfully explores the origins and ideologies of naming places to perform a critique of techno-romanticism.

10 minutes

Rime of the Ancient Mariner

a voiced recording of 'Rime Of The Ancient Mariner' - Samuel Taylor Coleridge by the entire staff and pupil body of Coleridge Community College, Cambridge, Jan 2005 with sound score by cris cheek and Simon Keep.

40 minutes

TNWK spent a week (Jan 05) in Coleridge Secondary School, Cambridge recording the Rime of the Ancient Mariner line by line - literally line by line - with all of the school’s pupils, all of the staff including the support staff (canteen workers, cleaners . . ) taking part. The total number of people involved was over 400 and only 3 pupils refused point blank to take part, necessitating some people to voice more than one line (although we preserved the fierce artifice of line by line shifts by getting those repeat voices not to voice consecutive lines but rather to come back 10 or 20 lines later - sometimes much later). So, line by line there is a shift of voice, often dialect, intonation, pronunciation, cadence, rhythm . . . the sheer range of names in this school is extraordinary, very very culturally diverse. The mariner is voiced by the pupils and staff intermixed (about 360 young people and 50 staff), the hermit by the head teacher, the narrator and the wedding-guest by year-heads of English.
Coleridge School is closing. It was placed under the albatross of special measures last year and has succeeded in moving out from under that pressure. However it is still considered too small. By today's standards the fact that all of the teachers know most every pupil in the school is considered a reason to force an amalgamation into a larger institution. As such it seemed to TNWK worth revaluing. We wanted to find a way for working on radio to provide the possibility for a school portrait, but a portrait rendered in sound rather than through a school photo. This ballad suggested itself through our processes of conversation.

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