I was recently asked three questions from organisers of our (Terminal Quartet) performance in Brisbane, 25 July (Small Black Box/Liquid Architecture5). I believe this will appear, along with answers from other performers, in their catalogue.
SBB: Tell me about your body… In what ways do you engage with your body through your musical performance practice? Do you try to expose, hide or transcend your won bodies?
AG: This can vary considerably as I also write for theater and often the pieces are supported by simple, minimal gestures as well as more strident movements. The inspiration comes from the written word and musical accompaniment, both drawing on story-telling techniques as well as the physical theatre of Bhuto and the often absurd, and entertaining nature of cabaret. I am driven by both passion and conviction and attempt to express dynamism at the extreme, from a whisper uttered with controlled breathing to the howl of fed-back guitar, both delivered with restraint and purpose, equally as effective…
SBB: Tell me about your sounds… What sounds do you like to work with? What particular qualities of a sound are you looking for?
AG: I am absorbed by timbre, harmony and harmonics… The sounds I seek in my compositions are largely the result of a combination of sounds, melded together to create a language that is both evocative and challenging. I am as comfortable with a synthesiser as I am with an oboe, as curious and playful with a single sine wave and tap delay as I would be with two river stones. It is about listening.
SBB: Tell me about your childhood… What are your earliest memories of playing with sounds and music? Where they happy or sad memories? How has this contributed to or relate to what you are doing now?
AG: Sound was always an escape for me… I grew up with radio and I am grateful for it. The radio provided me with an infinite variety of sounds to both listen and converse with.
I had also grown up with a collection of records the parents had brought across from Europe. This is perhaps where my Eastern European and cabaret interests grew from, a mixture of Yugoslav folk and German lounge tunes.
The first sounds I remember are that of trains and church bells. There were at least 3-4 community churches within a 2 kilometer radius from my home. By the time I was in High School I could hear them no longer and the trains were but a memory, consumed by the ever increasing din of traffic. I have since recorded train and tram journeys, as well as bells, in most countries I have visited. It has only been in recent times that I became aware of my childhood as a listener as listening and reading pretty much sums up those formative years.