Invisible Music at Platform 4 Online
Senses are heightened and emotions unravelled during Platform 4’s online performance Invisible Music, a digital meditation on hearing loss. Comprised of verbatim interviews accompanied by music and visual compositions, the piece is a unique experience that embodies the seldom-explored topic of losing one of our senses. Although inhibited by a few repetitive sequences, Invisible Music expertly moves from stage to screen and produces a touching experience for all those who choose to listen.
The production is a 47-minute-long episodic, experimental, auditory performance focused on producing an emotional journey as opposed to a linear narrative. Composed of real stories taken from artistic director Catherine Church’s mother’s local lipreading group, intermingled with complex sound design and digital art sequences, Invisible Music is an event dedicated to portraying a poetic account of reality. Daily life and common events such as going to the supermarket, listening to the radio and conversing with family are retold through the perspective of those gradually losing their hearing. Visuals resembling sound waves, sheet music and static are paired with varying musical accompaniments which expertly correlate with the interviews. Through strong dramaturgy and clear direction, the segments of Invisible Music compliment one another, crafting an immersive and almost hypnotic performance which truly highlights the beauty of hearing and the everyday sounds that we take for granted.
There is a range of complex emotions brought up throughout Invisible Music. The production presents 15 distinct, musically driven segments, each providing a new experience of listening to interviews and candid thoughts. There is a fluidity to the performance as each new viewpoint and emotional response to hearing loss are brought forward. The layered production offers optimism, anger, the contemplation of mortality, celebration and introspection. However, despite its diverse segments, the lengthy poetic interludes at times diminish the performance’s momentum and emotional impact.
The verbatim interviews are interlaced with prose which, although beautiful, feels at points self-indulgent. The power of the performance lies with the real participants and their stories; their emotions and thoughts are what make Invisible Music such a compelling production.
Despite the momentary lapses in pace caused by poetic breakaways, Invisible Music is a vulnerable, thought-provoking event. It marks itself not only as a solid digital performance, but also as an all-round beautiful and compelling production.
Invisible Music is available to stream from Platform 4’s website and participating theatres from 15th July 2020. For further information or to book visit the theatre company’s website here.