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Soundbites: Mechanical Being

Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music 13 Jan 2020 (M) 12:15 PM – 1:00 PM

Curated by: The Assembly Line (Ilysia Tan, Noah Diggs, Mervin Wong)


  • Ilysia Tan – The Garden of Earthly Delights (2019) Music composed for and shown with the Stan Brakhage film “The Garden of Earthly Delights” (1981) With permission from the Estate of Stan Brakhage Natalie Koh, violin (Year 4) Eugene Chew, double bass (Year 1) Stephanie Tan, clarinet (Year 3) Abner Wong, trumpet (Year 4) Danilo Ignacio Contreras Osorio, trombone (Year 3) Ilysia Tan, piano (Year 3)

  • The Assembly Line – Expanded cinema improvisation Planeswalker | Mervin Wong, visuals & live processing (’18) Noah Gabriel Diggs, cello (’19) Ilysia Tan, piano (Year 3)


When making art, people must live and work in order. We use our bodies and minds to craft something. We direct, or are directed. We act inside of a system to create something larger than we could alone. As time moves forward and progress is made, things are created to replace people. Machines that work better and faster than we do. Is this exploitative? Is something sacrificed? Do we become lost in the work?

As The Assembly Line, we try to find the lines that divide man and machine, progress and regression, humans and labour.

The Mechanical Being brings together electronics, acoustics, automation, and manual work in a spirit of cooperation. Spanning both film and music, the programme presents a physical dialogue that happens between man and contraption. The interfacing that happens every day, yet yields no further understanding between the two, beyond what already exists. In The Garden of Earthly Delights, live sound strives to communicate with film of the past.

There will be a 10 minute dialogue and Q&A session following the final performance.



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