Southern Sonic is a new festival at the CAC for audiences seeking unusual aural experiences. In this inaugural festival year, the CAC welcomes local and regional musicians, composers, sound installation artists, circuit builders, engineers, audio professionals and enthusiasts. Featuring premiers of original work, performances, workshops, and panel discussions, the festival focuses on exploring the compelling possibilities inherent in sonic transmissions of all types. The presented work runs the gambit of the genre- from experimental hip hop to avant chamber music; from psycho-acoustic architectural interventions to projects that explore the resonant tonalities of rude materials, and that link biofeedback from the body to sound generating software and live instrumentation. This gathering and celebration of southern contemporary music and sound creation will also feature discussions of the historical practices and base ingredients that have made this city and this region a hotbed of aural innovation.
The festival seeks to present artists who operate in the idioms of experimental music and sound art and installation, but the very definitions of what might be cast as “experimental” are entirely up for grabs. The goal is to create a space where musicians and audiences can share interlaced etudes played as a rhizome on a rhinestone or a circuit-bent cell phone.
The curators (Andrea Anderson, Courtney Bryan, Jebney Lewis, Aurora Nealand, Mariana Sheppard, and Rick Snow) seek new aural experiences that explode and recombine musical genres or even seek to redefine the goals of music and sound art. The City of New Orleans is internationally recognized as a center for American musical heritage and preservation. Festivals such as Jazz Fest, Satchmo Summer Fest, and French Quarter Fest celebrate the city’s historical associations with the development of Jazz, Funk, Ragtime, Blues, and early Rock and Roll. Southern Sonic wishes to continue to honor and explore music- and art-making in New Orleans and the South, but from a distinctly different point of departure. Southern Sonic will support the work of artists and practitioners using forms, technologies, tonalities, and resources extant in the South today that are inspired by a similar spirit.
Artists, musicians, and practitioners include Courtney Bryan, Jane Cassidy, Holland Hopson, and Tim Feeney, Andrew Raffo Dewar, Yotam Haber and Anna Schuleit Haber, Jebney Lewis and Steve Parker, Aurora Nealand, Rick Snow, Charm Taylor, and Versipel New Music Collective.