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Sinfonia Viva to feature Derby's 'night sounds'
Anna Meredith is Sinfonia Viva's resident composer
Anna Meredith is Sinfonia Viva's resident composer

'Night sounds' collected around Derby city centre are to feature in a new composition by Sinfonia Viva.

Composer Anna Meredith worked through the night collecting noises to use in a new piece which mixes orchestra, electronics and visuals.

The finished result will be unveiled at the orchestra's Assembly Rooms concert in February 2011.

The music will be accompanied by images collected by Eleanor Meredith who joined Anna on her night mission.

Anna told BBC Radio Derby: "We wanted to do a piece drawing on 10 hours of source material which pulls in sights and sounds gathered from the night.

"It's not really a time-lapse piece but uses that idea of a sense of progression from dusk till dawn."

Anna and Eleanor walked through the city capturing sounds of busy pubs, early morning street cleaners, market stalls being prepared, low-level buzzing from petrol station generators, bird song and sparsely-used dual carriageways.

The sky at night

Anna said: "I was interested in the hums you get from the back of a petrol station or a football stadium at night.

"I think it will be the quiet sounds which give this piece its atmosphere.

"It's not going to be a case of 'spot that sound' , I want it to capture more of a general ambience."

The pair enjoyed getting a feel for the 'rhythm' of the night.

She explained: "There's a swap-over period where the people who are getting up start to outnumber the people who are going home. It's a grey area, a change in atmosphere.

"So you get this frenzied peak building up, then a stasis followed by another peak building up for the day ahead.

"So there are these two parallel 'peaks' of day and night which I find quite interesting."

You can listen to Sinfonia Viva perform the finished composition at Derby's Assembly Rooms on 16 February 2011.

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