Artists’ music project is a real talking point

Rebecca Louise Collins and Johanna Linsley on Seaham's coastline.
Rebecca Louise Collins and Johanna Linsley on Seaham's coastline.
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Artists have come up with a conversation starter of a project, as they make the voices of a town into music.

Johanna Linsley and Rebecca Louise Collins will use sounds alongside snippets of overheard chat in Seaham to create tracks to be performed later this year.

We’ve called the project Stolen Voices as it’s all about listening, overhearing and the divisions between public places and private conversations.


Artist Johanna Linsley

Johanna said: “We’ve called the project Stolen Voices, as it’s all about listening, overhearing and the divisions between public places and private conversations.

“At the same time, we want to use listening to celebrate how sound makes a place unique.”

Specially-made computer terminals will be placed in locations in Seaham, including the library throughout April, where people can input pieces of overheard conversations to be a part of the songs.

Johanna and Rebecca will also carry out workshops with community groups.

Rebecca Louise said: “Every day we all negotiate the borders between public and private, as part of living together in a town or a city.

“We all overhear things and add our own thoughts and interpretations to what we hear.

“At the same time, surveillance and privacy are important topics for everyone today and we want Stolen Voices to prompt people to think more about the lines between public and private spaces.”

Composer Mariam Rezaie will work with the artists on creating the piece of music, which will be performed on Sunday, May 8, at Roobarb ‘n’ Custard in South Terrace.

The artists hope to carry out similar projects in the North East later in the year.

Stolen Voices is supported using funding by Arts Council England, in partnership with East Durham Creates, Helix Arts and Sound & Music.