DISS Diss Museum One of the displays that has attracted interest this season is Music Under the Radar, about electronic music composer Tristram Cary. He came to this via his work in wartime naval radar and had a studio at Fressingfield. The public can have a taste of his music at a free concert in St. Mary’s Hall, Diss (on the north side of the church) at 7.30pm on Saturday 9 April. Project co-ordinator Tristan Burfield contacted Tristram Cary’s son John and many other people who knew or worked with Cary. The result was a distinguished line-up for the concert. Trios, using turntables and a VCS3 synth, will be performed by Ian Helliwell and Simon James. Lawrence Casserley and Simon Desorgher will then play Narcissus on flute and electronics. Tristram Cary famously helped organise one of the first live electronic music concerts ever held, at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, London with Peter Zinovieff and David Cockerell on January 15th 1968.
Cary explained that the concert was an attempt by himself and the others to raise the profile of live electronic music: “When I got together with Zinovieff and Cockerell towards the end of the sixties one of the decisions made was there was not enough electronic concert music going on in England,” he said. This show featured Cary’s signature piece Birth is Life, 3 4 5, and contributions form Peter Zinovieff and Daphne Oram. The concert was a sell-out with the Queen Elizabeth Hall reaching it’s full 1,100 capacity and 300 people having to be turned away. The Financial Times critic, like many conservative concert-goers at the time, was bemused by the music, stating that although “technically it may be a triumph of skill and knowledge but what we heard resembled the dreariest kind of neo-Webern drawn out to inordinate length”. What you will hear in Diss on Saturday 9 April will probably be unlike anything you have heard before. Singalong-a-Max it ain’t. But keep an open mind and you might be impressed. By Basil Abbott
2016 April | 09
The April 2016 edition of Dispatch Magazine for Diss and Attleborough