It was hard rubbish night in Wagstaffe, the night I was leaving to return to Girgarre after my brother's funeral last week, so this old Pearl kit is now in the Music Supermarket. It's not clear yet how all the stuff donated and collected so far will fit into the jigsaw but there is a good supply on the shelves to get started.
We now have about nine blue cattle-wash drums cleaned and ready to become part of the school playground installation. These two prototypes and the mallets are the first things made in the Girgarre Music Supermarket. My thanks to John and Lorraine Warde for their fantastic help on this part of the project.
First Draft Design Ideas from the Girgarre Primary School children, 03 March 2017, for a musical fence/instrument/installation in their playground
The work at the school is in two parts - making and playing. The kids have put forward a range of suggestions for a ‘musical fence’ between the school and the rec reserve. We are using the art room as our design and experimentation centre every lunch-time. We plan to strip a piano and use it as a resonator for fence wires... so stay tuned. On Fridays I get to see the whole school and we are learning new skills in group music making. Our new instruments and skills will be on show in a public concert so save the date - Thursday May 11.
The Music Supermarket in Girgarre is now well stocked with tools and materials and ready for the first wave of making. The townsfolk are incredibly supportive. They have donated generously and are enthusiastic about the possibilities of this project. It is such a pleasure to be with this community and I look forward to getting started on the next phase .
The supermarket in Girgarre has been empty for quite a few years now. It's new owners, David and Susan Fulton have very generously renovated the space and made it available to the Girgarre Revival project. It will become the workshop where locals and visitors can make musical creations from junk, found and up-cycled materials.
My son Jackson rode with me from Melbourne to help me load in and set up. The pics above and the movie below are before anything happened...
Girgarre is a small town (pop 190) that serves the local (mainly) dairy farms near Shepparton in Victoria. It has suffered multiple setbacks in the last decade. Drought, falling milk prices and the closure of the local cheese factory resulted in half the population leaving, and with them the loss of amenities such as the supermarket, the butcher, the hairdresser and the corner shop. Not surprisingly, the community began to lose hope.
However, the townsfolk are positive and creative. To combat the malaise, music jams were started in the hall. This has flourished - now (ten years on) about 70 people turn up for the monthly meeting, and an annual music festival (the “Moosic Muster”) has been added to the calendar.
Recently the town applied for a major grant via the Small Town Transformations initiative. I am one of three artists who will work with the townspeople to transform the town with music and sound. We will create an interactive sound sculpture on the school boundary fence. The children, teachers, parents and I will work together to make and play the instrument and it will be the centrepiece of a community concert.
In addition I will be running a variety of music skills and instrument making workshops for residents and visitors. All of my activities will be located in the ex-supermarket which will become a music making and playing ‘shed’. Anyone can drop in and work on their creation, attend workshops or music skills classes, or help design and construct the school fence sound sculpture.
The project is wide ranging - more details can be found here.
I am really looking forward to being a part of Girgarre’s revival through music and sound. I will chronicle the project here so keep an eye!
18 December 2016
PS: we are collecting junk - if you want to donate anything please email email@example.com. Here is a list of the sorts of things we want
Robin Fox and I were able to drop in for a photo shoot with locals last April. Pics by myself and Stephanie Lake
PREPARING THE GARGARRO GALA
An article written for the local Girgarre Gazette (to be published after Easter and previewed here) describes the process of creating an orchestra of locals with DIY instruments, then writing a major work for them.
BACK IN GIRGARRE
Music Supermarket and
this Girgarre Blog now reactivated.
THE STRING CANS PROJECT is about splitting a guitar into six single-string tin-can instruments for use in community orchestras.
This blog documents it as it evolves. The blueprints will be published and available for free to anyone who would like to build one.
Change the music world,
one string at a time.
INTRO 20 Dec 2017
INSPIRATION 24 Dec 2017