Multidisciplinary artist Samson Young was trained as a composer and graduated with a PhD in Music Composition from Princeton University in 2013. His academic background in music has led him to incorporate elements of experimental music, sound studies, and site-specific performance into his art practice. He uses sound as a tool, cutting through the veil of the everyday to uncover ideologies and political propositions.
For his work Muted Situations #22: Muted Tchaikovsky’s 5th (2018), Young instructed the Flora Sinfonie Orchester of Cologne to perform without any music. The musicians played with muted instruments, heightening all other sounds that they make during their performance: their breathing, turning of pages of sheet music, the movement of the keys of the instruments. Young forces the listener to reimagine and reconstruct the music through sounds that would otherwise be masked or marginalised. The work is part of a larger series, Muted Situations, in which Young brings what is normally less audible to the fore and constructs a new soundscape.
This video was originally published on M+ Stories.
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