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Shannon Watson and Imperfect Orchestra

A live performance of two parts created by Shannon Watson and produced in collaboration with Imperfect Orchestra, this piece was performed during the 2018 Plymouth Art Weekender and was shaped by the movement of the swimmers in the water.

Artist: Shannon Watson and Imperfect Orchestra
Category: Temporary
Date: 2018
Location: View on our Public Art Map [desktop and tablet; requires Google sign-in]
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Commissioner: Visual Arts Plymouth
Producers: Plymouth Art Weekender
Supporters: The Box, Take a Part, Plymouth Soup, Arts Council England, University of Plymouth, Plymouth Culture, KARST, Plymouth City Council and RIO


Project Description

Imperfect Orchestra, an ensemble of live string-playing musicians, created a new composition called ‘Plymphony No.1 in Sea’ for this unique performance.

Wild swimmers and those more comfortable around the shoreline entered Plymouth Sound to ‘conduct’ the orchestra. Their strokes in the water informed the pace of the music.

Photo of a group pf people with guitars

The piece was inspired by Watson’s love of Plymouth – particularly the Hoe – and the wild swimmers she interviewed. These personal narratives revealed links between music and the sea; some surrounding the pier and bandstand that once stood on the Hoe but which were sadly destroyed by bombing during the Second World War.

This project received Plymouth SOUP funding and was supported by The Box, Take a Part and Visual Arts Plymouth.

About the Artist

Shannon Watson is an emerging artist based in the South West. Her practice aims to generate awareness of socio-cultural histories attached to public spaces. Through conducting local research and interacting with local people her works often result in a performance-based outcome.