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New College, Oxford: celestial drone opera

New College. Photo by Giulia Biasibetti.
New College. Photo by Giulia

One evening while exploring the beautiful grounds of New College in Oxford – basically a medieval castle in the centre of the city – we stumbled across an operatic singing lesson spilling out of one of the college rooms.

Not only did it complete the atmospheric impression of being in a different place and a different time, it felt rather like eavesdropping on something we shouldn’t have been hearing.

To reimagine the sound, it’s that sense of overhearing something that introduces the piece, but then we go on to transfer this singing lesson from the past perhaps into the future, with some gentle beats and bass underpinning a synthetic bed for the operatic vocals.

City version:

Memory version: