The soothing lullabies Indian mothers sing to their babies will be brought to life at Middlesbrough Town Hall for a performance by South Asian arts organisation Manasamitra.
The Yorkshire-based company will deliver a performance of Lullaby Sonic Cradle, a contemporary musical exploration of night time sounds interspersed with lullabies from India and audio recordings gathered from the local community.
In the run-up to the performance, on Saturday 13th April at The Crypt, Middlesbrough Town Hall, Manasamitra will set up Lullaby Booths at various locations in the town – including at a dementia drop-in session – to record local people’s memories of childhood songs and lullabies. These will then be incorporated into the performance soundscape, reflecting the community’s habits and passions.
Members of the company will be at the dementia café at Marton Community Hub and Library on Monday 8th April between 2pm and 3.30pm. The café allows people living with dementia and their family carer, friends or relatives, to meet and share experiences, in a relaxed and informal environment.
Further sessions will run throughout next week. The team will hold sessions in the studio at Middlesbrough Town Hall on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday (April 9th, 10th and 12th) and at the weekly community day at MIMA (Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art) in Centre Square on Thursday 11 April, for a community day from 2pm-3pm.
Inspired by the songs Indian women sing to their babies while working in the fields, the performance is created through a collaborative process involving communities, professional musicians and technology. The result is a restful, tranquil and immersive musical experience featuring interactive visual effects.
Composer Duncan Chapman, harpist Lucy Nolan and multi-instrumentalist James Cave will join Manasamitra founder and noted Carnatic singer Supriya Nagarajan to deliver Lullaby Sonic Cradle.
Supriya said: “Following the success of our performances in 2016, we’re pleased to secured Grants for the Arts funding from Arts Council England to enable us to deliver the Lullaby Sonic Cradle project in partnership with venues across the country.
“Before we perform, we carry out extensive audience development work and engage with our host partners to better understand the cultural landscapes behind each community.“
This has enabled us to deliver performances that are largely bespoke to each audience, and which place emphasis on the experiences of attendees, whether that be mothers and tots in rural communities or the culturally diverse make-up of the local population in Middlesbrough.”
Lullaby Sonic Cradle will be performed at 4pm on Saturday 13th April in The Crypt. Tickets cost £10.50 (concessions £8.50) which includes the booking fee. To book, please go to https://www.middlesbroughtownhall.co.uk/shows/lullaby-sonic-cradle/
Based in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, Manasamitra delivers a range of South Asian arts and cultural experiences in traditional and innovative ways.
The company’s work is stimulated by ideas, forms and aesthetics from India within a contemporary British context.