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Making music from recycled materials: how do they do it?

by on March 29, 2012

What do an exhaust hose, artillery shell and broken monkey bars have in common?  They’re all recycled materials that are salvaged and beautifully sculpted into percussion instruments in the upcoming ScrapArtsMusic performance at the Fredericton Playhouse.

The musical pioneers of ScrapArtsMusic, led by artistic director Gregory Kozak, have incorporated 145 unique hand-made instruments into a fast-paced eco-conscious percussion performance featuring original compositions.  ScrapArtsMusic was founded in 1998 by Gregory Kozak– a percussion virtuoso with a talent for welding, a commitment to recycling and energy to burn, along with Justine Murdy– a designer with a passion for spectacle and a head for making things happen.  Together they are the heart and soul of ScrapArtsMusic.

Gregory Kozak not only wrote all the music performed in the show, but invented and built all the instruments as well.  Highlights include Junk-on-a-Stick cymbal trees made with threaded rod and what-ever could be found sound makers; the Sigh-chordians, made from plumbing fixtures and accordion reeds; Gong and Chime Arrays supporting Artillery Shells (instruments fashioned from huge artillery shells) and the Annoyophone made from dishwasher hoses, bagpipe reeds and balloons.  Compositions include the Conundrum, a complex drumming number on one of Gregory’s one-of-a-kind, homemade contraptions, Phonk featuring two performers striking and tossing coils high into the air that soon develop into a full-on rhythmic powerhouse, and Magnum Opus for Bowls and Plates, where one by one, the musicians join the stage each with their own AlumoPlate an aluminum pot bottom cut away each playing their own unique rhythm.

Gregory and the musical ensemble are well known for their sheer physical energy and flawless command of their instruments that are plucked, struck and played with a bow.  The performance is not only a beautifully performed soundscape, but also a visual sculptural feast that marries musical ingenuity with environmental consciousness.

The message of ScrapArtsMusic is “bang-on”:  sometimes it pays to be sitting in a pile of garbage!

Join us for ScrapArtsMusic at the Fredericton Playhouse on Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at 7:30pm for this family friendly show.

Check out this three-minute trailer:

By Amani Wassef
Director of Education / Community Engagement

Excerpts taken from ScrapArtsMusic Educator’s Guide

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From → Upcoming Shows

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