As part of the 2017 UK/India year of culture, Metal - in partnership with Warp Records, Barbican Centre, and Boiler Room; plus Indian partners Wild City and What About Art? - present Different Trains 1947.
Different Trains 1947 is a collaboration between Ninja Tune's Actress, Jack Barnett (These New Puritans), Indian music producer Sandunes, percussionist Jivraj Singh and vocalist Priya Purushothaman, and filmmakers/artists Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard, who will perform a new audiovisual composition in response to the events of 1947.
Though the performances will comprise entirely new work, as a primary source of inspiration the composers have considered the conceptual and formal framework of Different Trains (1988) by the genre-defining minimalist composer Steve Reich.
In addition to archival film footage from the BFI’s National Archive which will be woven through the performances, the composition will include a new set of social archive recordings created in both India and the UK, featuring interviews with those who lived through the events of 1947.
In India this archive was created by Aanchal Malhotra, a multidisciplinary artist and oral historian working with memory and material culture. Aanchal recently released her first book, Remnants of a Separation, about the belongings carried by refugees to either side of the border during the Partition of India in 1947.
In the UK this archive was created by Jah Jussa, a documentary maker and archivist with a practice embedded in British political history and social justice.
Different Trains 1947 will premiere in Liverpool as an open-air concert at Metal, Edge Hill railway station - the oldest active passenger railway station in the world – on 27th September 2017.
The piece will then be presented at Barbican Hall London (1st October 2017) and Magnetic Fields Festival, within the grounds of a 17th Century palace on the edge of the desert in Rajasthan in India (17th December 2017), an international showcase that will serve as the culmination of the entire project.
Support across the live events will be provided by electronic music duo Darkstar (Warp Records). They will be performing a new composition developed in collaboration with Harthill Youth Centre in Wavertree, Liverpool. This experimental work will initially take the shape of an interactive sound installation at Edge Hill Station throughout September culminating in a final composition premiering live on 27th September.
This project, named Trackbed, comprising the installation and performances, is the outcome of several residencies Darkstar have run at Harthill Youth Centre, with the aim of encouraging young people to talk about the issues they face: from migration and Brexit, to music, family and community. A short film by Cieron Magat is also being commissioned alongside the project as part of the installation and live performance.