Five Octave Range

Five Octave Range

Five Octave Range
Paul Wong, 2017
Non-synced loops, sound

Five Octave Range (2017) was created as a site-specific outdoor work for the Vancouver Opera Festival. It was presented as a multi-screen video installation on four round screens. Created as a series of non-synchronized video and sound loops that permitted an uncanny relationship to coalesce between sound and picture, these portals will provided viewers access to an up-close and personal experience with opera. Much like jazz, it is free form and abstract.

Paul Wong invited four opera singers to his studio to perform for the camera. The recordings took place in an industrial warehouse space with very ‘live’ acoustics. Wong selected four singers (two men and two women) to ensure a diverse and dynamic range of voices and languages: baritone, tenor, coloratura soprano and mezzo-soprano; English, French, German, Italian and Kwagiulth.

From the outset, the performers were aware of Paul’s intended experimental approach. He was not interested in simply representing a musical piece or a literal performance. Rather, he wanted to explore, and play with vocal and visual gestures, repetition, decay, resonance, motion, purity, abstraction, mashing and mixing. This work was created through the editing process, listening to the sound of the vocalizations and rhythms, and artists’ gestures. This work is a visceral response, the voice is a magical, and these performers are finely tuned instruments.

Commissioned by Vancouver Opera with generous grant from the McGrane-Pearson Endowment Fund, and Vivo Media Arts Centre.

Director: Paul Wong
Cast: Marion Newman, Teiya Kasahara, Frederik Robert and Joel Klein
Producer: Thomas Anselmi
Video Production: Kevin Doherty
Editors: Paul Wong & Kevin Doherty
Sound Recording Design: Paddy Ryan
Casting: Rachel Iwaasa
Production Assistants: Jeff Berg and Sebnem Ozpeta