Carolan recently appeared at Pint of Science – “a worldwide science festival which brings researchers to your local pub/cafe/space to share their scientific discoveries with you – no prior knowledge required”. This year’s festival took place in 32 towns and cities across the UK, including Nottingham.
Carolan finished off the Nottingham festival as the final act of its Creative Reactions Closing Night, a celebration of creative collaborations between science and art hosted by Rough Trade Records. The programme, which was both fascinating and engaging in equal measure, included a collaborative performance of the nature of pain by a biomedical scientist and a performance artist; a participatory event in which the audience read aloud fragments of scientific papers as if poetry; an animation inspired by nuclear research; … and Carolan.
Our performance included a brief rendition of Turlough O’Carolan’s tune ‘Number 176’ (whose true title is lost to history), followed by discussions of the making of the guitar, of Artcodes, of various facets of guitar identity, and finally of the Internet of Things.
Technically, the performance went pretty smoothly, with successful scanning of the Artcodes on Carolan’s front, back and sound hole cover triggering various videos, even under fairly dim stage lighting, though it still feels like there’s a bit of a knack to be perfected when it comes to being fully confident about scanning live on stage. We were also really pleased with the sound from our new Udo Roesner Da Capo 75 amp. The main technical wrinkle was the need to gaffer tape the HDMI adapter into the iPhone so that it didn’t just fall out under gravity after a while. If only phone accessories had the satisfying snap of a good guitar cable!
So a huge thanks to the Pint of Science team for running the festival and for inviting us to perform. Thanks also to the audience for your probing questions afterwards!