2015 Archive

Highlights & images from 2015 can be found here

In 2015, Anne Norman and Anja Tait gave two pilot concerts entitled “Whispered Shadows” within Darwin’s WWII Oil Storage Tunnel 5 with visiting violinist Emily Sheppard joining them on the second night.

From this initial exploration of the acoustics and phenomenal resonance of this subterranean venue, a CD was produced: Beneath the Surface.

Test run complete, with the assistance of project manager Anisha Angelroth, Anne successfully applied to the Australia Council for funding assistance to engage other musicians to join her in the tunnel for the first official Tunnel Number Five: Festival of Underground Music in 2016.

Bios of the performers:

Bios for Anja Tait and Anne Norman are here: https://tunnelnumberfive.com/bios/

Emily Sheppard – violin

emily2015tunnelEmily has a particular passion for improvisation, both on her instrument and in life. She plays in the string duo, the Eureka Ensemble, touring regional Australia, performing in schools and giving workshops in improvisation. She studied at Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School and the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM), and her teachers have included Miwako Abe, Adam Chalabi and Peter Tanfield. In 2014 she played as a soloist with both Orchestra Victoria and the ANAM Orchestra and is a casual member with the Australian Chamber Orchestra Collective, the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria.

Emily has collaborated with Paul Kelly (‘Conversations with Ghosts’ 2012/13) and Katie Noonan, and plays in a genre bending Folk/Classical duo (Zoukin). Emily also recently performed with Michael Kieran Harvey in Tasmania, premiering three new works, including ‘Portrait of Bob Brown’, Michael’s musical homage. Selected works from this concert written by Michael and Emily are being recorded in December 2016 for release in early 2017.

In 2015 Emily performed in the resonant underground tunnels in Darwin with shakuhachi player Anne Norman, described as a ‘sensory experience’ (Vicki Kerrigan, ABC Radio presenter NT) and ‘enchanting and transformative’ (Will Tinapple, Director of ABC Open: Top End). The album “Beneath the Surface” was recorded in Tunnel Number Five and released in 2016. It features Emily with Anne Norman and Anja Tait (violin). ‘The improvisations … reveal the exceptional power of collective and spontaneous creativity… so rich in audio images that it sounds like an artistic cinematic soundtrack.’ ALBUM REVIEW by Sonic Gallery

When not playing music, Emily likes dancing to it, and when she’s had enough of that she goes hiking.

Here’s the link to highlights & images from 2015

Back Story to the concerts in Tunnel Number Five:

It all began as a quest to find a lighthouse to do a gig in. A vertical “lightflute” as I call them. That’s right… I was not think laterally at all! But I soon found the paperwork and bureaucracy of staging public performances in lighthouses is just impossible. I was despairing about this when someone at a party in Townsville told me about the reverberant tunnels under Darwin.

“A horizontal flute!”… So, I called the WWII Oil Storage Tunnels operator, Robert Marchant, and he said he had never had a concert in the tunnels, but why not. So I called Anja Tait, the only muso I knew in Darwin, and asked her to join me; then I heard from Emily Sheppard that she would be in town performing with ACO2, so I booked a second night… so two gigs now (Emily and I met jamming in a cave in Tassie a few months earlier and agreed to record together at the first opportunity…).

Then I applied to Darwin Festival for the shows to go under their umbrella… they said “no”… but I went to Darwin anyway. I hitched a lift to Uluru, a bus to Alice and was flown by the “Walking With Spirits” festival to Darwin… long story… but the end result was two resonant concerts under Darwin in August 2015 with two wonderful audiences who brought their own seats.

And we were very privileged to have a location recordist with us. David Matthews recorded both gigs as well as several late night/ early morning sessions without an audience… and a fabulous CD is now in the offing.*

Anne Norman

Highlights & images from 2015 can be found here

*Available through Darwin Tours, at the door of the WWII Oil Storage Tunnels, The Boite World Music in Melbourne, or on line here: BENEATH THE SURFACE
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