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Arnolfini - est 1961

We regret to announce that we must postpone Another Sky. Owing to the situation in Gaza, we cannot go ahead at this time. We have contacted ticket holders to issue refunds, and will look to reschedule at a suitable date. Please accept our sincerest apologies.

Another Sky is a touring festival of experimental music from the SWANA (South West Asia & North Africa) region and diaspora, including incredible pieces of improv, ambient soundscapes, compositions for western and non-western instruments, DJs, moving-image works, voice and machine-learning technologies. Blurring genres and categories, Another Sky celebrates the breadth of talent and ideas of SWANA/diaspora artists.

For Arnolfini, the line up includes: Wire Recorder Piece, Halim El-Dabh (1921-2017) The Egyptian-American who beat musique concrète to it. El-Dabh’s Expressions of Zaar premiered in Cairo in 1944, substantially pre-dating Pierre Schaeffer’s earliest musique concrète works. Another Sky will present a diffusion of Wire Recorder Piece, the surviving fragment of Expressions of Zaar, which utilises samples of female voices chanting during a zaar (a healing or exorcism).

Also work by:

FRKTL is the solo experimental music project of British-Egyptian artist and composer Sarah Badr. A classically trained multi-instrumentalist working with live sampling, improvisation, vocal manipulation, generative processes and field recordings, she creates emotive, immersive explorations of sound. Building systems for 3D graphics and spatial audio generation, she explores relationships between form and space in new tech domains. Her work is inspired and informed by nature, from world creation and biomorphic design, to simulations of complex organic phenomena. Her critically acclaimed album, Excision After Love Collapses, marks nearly a decade of independent, self-published works. She is an Oram Award recipient for innovation in sound, music and related technologies.

Sophie Hoyle is an artist and writer whose practice explores an intersectional approach to postcolonial, queer, feminist, critical psychiatry and disability issues. Their work looks at the relation of the personal to (and as) political, individual and collective anxieties, and how alliances can be formed where different kinds of inequality and marginalisation intersect. They relate personal experiences of being queer, non-binary and part of the SWANA diaspora to wider forms of structural violence. From lived experience of psychiatric conditions and trauma (or PTSD), they began to explore the history of biomedical technologies in relation to state and military surveillance and control.

Hardi Kurda is a composer, sound artist, improviser, researcher and curator. He works with classical acoustic and electronic music, radio and found scores, and develops pieces in which music interacts with different art forms in art spaces to create new listening experiences. He composed 24/7 Everywhere for the Listening Biennial Slemani, part of the Global Listening Biennial collaboration with SPACE21, in the Kurdistan region of Iraq, where he is a founder and curator for sound art and experimental music. He is a scholarship holder at the Radio Art Residency in Halle (DE), where he created two experimental radio performances based on his illegal journey to Europe which revolve around the construction of legality.

Mariam Rezaei is a multi-award-winning composer, turntablist, writer and performer. She previously led experimental arts project TOPH (The Old Police House), Tusk Fringe and Tusk North, and is Artistic Director of Tusk Festival, all based in Newcastle and Gateshead. She has been awarded the Paul Hamlyn Foundation Awards For Artists in recognition of her contribution to music composition. Recent projects include a new live work made with Maria Chavez and Victoria Shen, fellow radical artists in the new turntablism, commissioned by Counterflows and Rewire festivals; Veil, a collaboration with Stephen Bishop released on Tusk Editions/Opal Tapes; SISTER with soprano Alya Al-Sultani; This World Which Is Made Of Women for BBC Radio 3 and SADTITZZZ for London Contemporary Music Festival.

Salam Shamki is a London-based multidisciplinary artist who is driven by story and documentation. She works as a freelance filmmaker, artist and arts facilitator, and will soon launch Heartnouveaux, an alternative jewellery and crochet boutique. Her practice is inspired by her cultural identity as a British Iraqi as she seeks to create works that identify and interrogate British and Iraqi culture through a postcolonial lens—as in her to-be-released project “Do I need the National Gallery?”Focusing on Iraqi culture and arts, she uses both fiction and documentary film—both live action and animation—to ask questions and archive pasts and presents.

Zeynep Ağcabay was born and raised in Istanbul, and their music explores the juxtaposition of Eastern and Western influences on their identity. Growing up with traditional Turkish music playing at home, Zeynep went on to discover new roots in London. Their experimental approach aims to discover a unique blend of these two sonic worlds by composing unusual structures of abstract percussions, ambiguous vocals and ambient soundscapes, mixed with sounds inspired by the Turkish ney, kanun, davul and darbuka.

Another Sky is co-directed by Sam Salem (composer; co-founder Distractfold Ensemble; RNCM) and Emily Moore (Southern Bird artist management & production; former co-director Kammer Klang).

Funders: Arts Council England, Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung, PRS for Music Foundation, The Marchus Trust, Hinrichsen Foundation.

Partners: Arnolfini, Counterflows Festival, Cyborg Soloists, Ensemble Contrechamps, Irtijal Festival, The Mosaic Rooms, Royal Northern College of Music, Safar Film Festival, Space21 Festival.

The festival launches Another Sky as a long-term artist development network, this year platforming artists who live in or whose heritage spans Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Iraqi Kurdistan, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine and Türkiye.


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