Brighton Festival - The Chattri (first performance)

How do we understand where we are through listening?

15th May 2022, 8am, 9am and 10am

How do we understand where we are through listening?

From across the city, drifting over land, sea and forgotten sites, comes an invitation to gather, sit and listen together. Australian artists Madeleine Flynn and Tim Humphrey have commissioned a community of writers and sound artists with a connection to Brighton to design sound works that respond to five specific sites that reverberate with ancient, recent, and future stories of the city.

Each chosen site is a place where we can experience the confluence of past and future, the ebb and flow of time and tide. Places that hover around dereliction and renewal, separation and coming together. The Adur Estuary at Shoreham-by-Sea, the Chattri, the West Pier, East Brighton, and Brighton Marina will all be linked in a physical and aural network. We will gather together with the artists, on simple seating stands, to contemplate vistas that we rarely pause properly to see, to spend time together in a place where the site is both companion and performer.

This unique perspective merged with an immersive soundscape, live performance and each area’s natural ambience, gives us the opportunity to look outwards and consider what it means to be here now, what it meant in the past, and what it might mean in the future. A chance to witness, together, exactly what it is that makes these places so unique.

  • Razia Aziz (Creative Conception, Composition, Arrangements, Vocals, Harmonium, Keyboard) (Sun 15 & 29 May)
    Razia’s relationship with Brighton and the Downs spans five decades. Her life weaves activism, spirituality, creativity and teaching together in service of love.

    Razia is joined by: 
    Baluji Shrivastav OBE: Sitar, Dilruba, Hindustani Musical Direction
    Yash Kummar: Tablas, Vocals 
    Peter Middleton: Creative Direction, Audio Production 
    With valued contributions from: Alex Moody (snare drum), Barinder Gohler (Ek Onkar recitation), Cassie Aziz-Few (cello), Dominic Rai (names of the deceased), Hamida & Khalid & Tahera Aziz (vocals), Harpreet Kaur Paul (vocals), Imam Dr Salah Al-Ansari (qur’anic recitation), Neal Bland (trumpet), Sheila Auguste & Edi Mandala (vocals), Ustad Fida Hussain Khan (Hindustani musical consultation), Anuja Sharma (home front).

Text: Dulani Kulasinghe
Dulani was born in Sri Lanka, raised in New Mexico and now lives in Brighton. Her writing explores contested heritage, belonging and legacies of empire. Her work on the Chattri was published in Writing Our Legacy’s anthology Hidden Sussex and has been used in Sussex University courses.

Cultural Consultant: Davinder Dhillon