Shiva Feshareki - Sampling the City - 25th November 2022

Sampling the City is an interdisciplinary project between Shiva Feshareki and EMPRes that incorporates sound, composition, technology, hermeneutics and architecture. It aimed to connect with different areas of cultural and academic life within Oxford, allowing these voices and narratives to distil into a collaborative work and final performance with Shiva at the Sheldonian Theater, Oxford on 25th November 2022..

The live performance was the culmination of this project in which Shiva Feshareki uses her turntables to create a unique spatial composition live-in-the-moment at The Sheldonian. Samples collected from in and around Oxford will be incorporated with music and archive recordings from the EMPRES library. Old college choirs LPs will be morphed, expanded and contracted into tangible objects of sound that move, swirl and glide in the space. Different voices will be heard and manipulated live in improvisation, speeding them up, slowing them down, forwards and backwards to infinite effect, creating music and new perspectives out of the diverse sounds and narratives of Oxford. 

During the performance, Shiva listened and responded to the acoustics, the energy and the architecture of The Sheldonian to form a duet between herself and the acousticspace. A cutting-edge 16 speaker ambisonic sound- system was installed to generate a new form of 3D spatial audio also controlled by Shiva as she composed live. This approach is archetypal of Shiva's ambisonic live turntablism in which she fearlessly warps time and space through the boundless possibility of her turntables, interconnecting society, geography, and history into musical compositions that broaden perspectives. 

Performing with Shiva was Daniel Hulme on modular synthesizer. Daniel weaved together field recordings and narratives from the city of Oxford with the crackling raw electrical energy of the analogue synthesizer, to form a free- improvised collage and brand-new imaginary landscape – all in quadraphonic sound – convolving with Shiva to create a unique spatial duet. 

The ambisonics for this event were powered by AUDITIF (Serafino di Rosario and Mario Buoninfante).




Narrative contributions from local artists and cultural ambassadors:

- Conversation between Zahra Haji Fath Ali Tehrani (musician, director of the Young Women's Music Project in Oxford) and Shaista Aziz (journalist and writer) - recorded whilst driving around the city of Oxford.

- ‘The Colonial Theme Park’ - poem read by Rawz (poet/rapper, Founder/Director of the Urban Music Foundation; 2022 Sound Artist in Residence at St John’s College, Oxford). Produced by Daniel Hulme.

- Emeritus Professor of Music Susan Wollenberg, in conversation with Gascia Ouzounian, discussing her appointment to the Music Faculty in 1972.


Field Recordings: Soundwalks in Central Oxford recorded by Shiva Feshareki. Soundwalks in Cowley recorded by Shiva Feshareki. Soundwalk in Oxford Museum of Natural History recorded by Daniel Hulme.
Soundwalk in Gloucester Green Market recorded by Daniel Hulme. Local and national radio broadcast clips recorded by Daniel Hulme.

Local artists music purchased from a Cowley Road record shop: Lucy Leave – Everyone is Doing so Well Moogieman and The Masochists - Ghost Driver Various – In The Beginning Tommy Steele Rainbow Reservoir – Channel Hanna
Dr. Box – Tales Vienna Ditto - Flat Earth

Records from the Oxford Music Faculty Library:
- The Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford - Faire is the Heaven directed by Francis Grier.
- The Choir of New College Oxford - William Byrd, Cantiones Syacrae directed by Edward Higginbottom. Schola Cantorum of Oxford - A Recital of Choral Music directed by John Byrt.