Nathan Bissette, an English/American musician and composer, and Kristin Borgehed, Swedish dito, as well as co-founder of FPA, launched their album PurcellPartialsPietist in November 2016.
The duo was founded a few years ago, in Aberdeen, Scotland. The work is based in traditional singing and playing from central parts of Sweden/northeast Scotland, and consists mainly of improvisation and microtonality. String instruments and voices are the main instruments we work with.
This work has a practical side, as is shown on this CD, as well as a theoretical, through Kristin’s PhD studies on microtonality in singing. The repertoire includes a variety of tings, from dance music to church music, from lullabies to wordless humming.
The album has been very well received, and we look forward to travel around with this music in 2017. Kristin and Nathan would like to say thanks to the board of FPA for this kind contribution!
Here are links to the album, and also to our facebookpage, where all news about concerts etc appear!
We are very pleased by the huge number of new readers finding our blog, several hundreds from all over the world!! Among our readers are a mix of musicians, people that sing and play in sessions or like to attend festivals, researchers, folk art nerds and people with local connection to the event we cover. Working with this broad audience has lead to a few changes in the website structure.
Folk Practice Academy, often called FPA, was founded by long term colleagues Astrid Selling and Kristin Borgehed in 2011.
Since Folk Practice Academy is an international organisation, our blog posts will be mostly in English, but at times also Swedish, Estonian, or any other of the languages of our associated partners.
This dynamic approach to language does also go for the section of our website called Articles&Reflections. Please feel free to share your thoughts with us, even if you prefer to not write in English!
The hashtag #libertéegalitétonalité will from now on be used for posts here and other social media, for posts related to Kristin Borghed’s PhD project at the University of Aberdeen. The project is called Tuning the Human Voice: An Empirical Exploration of Tonality in Northern Traditional Singing. Feel free to scroll down this page for a short info film.
This PhD project on singing traditions in northern Europe, is in close cooperation with Folk Practice Academy, in fact, the work is inseparably intertwined.
This is a picture of me, my mother Elisabeth Bjurström Jonzon, Malungsfors, Sweden and my aunt Anna Hedin, Malungsfors, Sweden. They are the two singers that have had the greatest impact on me in terms of songs, singing style, story telling, general life advice, as well as together with other relatives always helping my family when I have been away singing, recording and writing.
For more info of the project, please read here!! http://www.abdn.ac.uk/staffnet/profiles/r01keb12
With a few days’ distance to sonADA 2015 | Theme: MESS (http://sonada.org/sonADA2015/), I have the opportunity to sit down and share som of my thoughts.
The festival invitation said “If music is organized sound, composing really starts by identifying chaotic elements. sonADA invites and challenges artists to showcase mess of their own.”, and I made two contributions. On the opening night of the festival, at the 17 Art Gallery in Aberdeen, Scotland, (https://www.list.co.uk/place/52799-seventeen/) I took part in a panel discussion as one out of three female composers/performers. With lively input from the audience, we talked about our backgrounds, but also if and how embodiment, and the aspect of gender/femininity, has impact on our creative and scientific work. My own contribution did, as always, start with some live singing. A little microtonality, and asymmetrical beats here and there sure wake up most audiences! It is a fine and thought provoking experience that when travelling abroad with the music that is closest and most intuitive to you, like a “nonsense song” or a lullaby you learned as a small child, musicians with decades of formal music education could make comments like “that must be difficult!” Yes, it is, and no, it’s not!
My talk was mainly on how singing and playing instruments are not only something you do in your spare time, but how the performative act of making live acoustic music is actually a form of technology in itself. Lots of discussions circled around what could be said to be a musical piece, regarding tradition. A very good question – please fell free to make comments here! (in any language, as always!)
The second contribution was giving a performance together with my English Aberdeen colleague Nathan Bissette (http://www.serg-aberdeen.net). We have worked together for years, around performing and composing traditional, as well as classical and electronic music. We were invited as two separate composers, but chose to collaborate on a longer piece, made for this special occasion. It was a nice crowd, and we were prepared with our two chairs, the floor, a scarf, a computer, a guitar and two voices. The reception was very good, and people were singing along – as we encouraged them to, despite that this was not the typical folk audience that are used to that.
I left the festival with many good impressions, and an increased courage and interest in continuing to work for highlighting the multi-dimensional skills it takes being a traditional musician!
Tack för er stund!!
Kristin, PhD student at Elphinstone Institute (https://www.abdn.ac.uk/elphinstone/)
Tonight is the premiere of a new performance by Nathan Bissette and Kristin Borgehed. Mixing live electronic and accoustic music, with sound projections of Kristin’s children’s singing, makes a live exploration of a direct five generation line of singing traditions!! ❤
The concert takes place in Aberdeen, Scotland. All welcome!!