News - One Song

Migrant women’s voices will be raised in song at Museum of the Home in London as part of a new art installation, which opens on Tuesday 25th October ...

Press Release

One Song is a new community archive and participatory video project exploring the power of songs that connect us to our roots. Created with women from the diverse migrant communities of Shoreditch and Hoxton between April and June 2022, the project looks at how songs are carried across borders and yet firmly rooted in the places they were first sung. It asks how, through the experience of singing, migrant communities can be transported back to places they left behind. The project culminates in an installation, which will be presented at the museum from 25th October 2022 to 5th February 2023.

Commissioned by Counterpoint Arts from artist Kadir Karababa, with funding from Hackney Council’s Shoreditch and Hoxton Art Fund, One Song is inspired by Karababa’s family story of migration from Eastern Turkey to London. Karababa worked with women across Hackney who had the shared experience of having moved to the UK.

Participants were recruited through a series of community workshops at the Museum of the Home in which they shared stories with each other and contemplated the question, “which one song takes you back to the place you first called home?”. Contributors were then invited to sing their song, which was filmed and has become part of the video installation and online archive. Sung in their original languages, the songs have been given English subtitles, allowing the viewer to experience their themes of land, love and loss.

Audiences will come face to face with 15 women as they sing acapella, sometimes alone, sometimes overlapping in a chorus of voices. Alongside the installation there will be a series of associated events including workshops for families and panel discussions exploring the work further. The films will be stored digitally as part of Hackney Archives and be available to access online at a dedicated web page.

The museum will also engage the local community with Sounds Like Home, a series of family activities between 25th and 29th October inspired by One Song, with singing, music, filmmaking and storytelling. The Children’s Choir with Ellen Muriel invites children and their guardians to share songs and learn rhythms, celebrating the diversity of sounds that accompany our daily lives, wherever we call home. Families are invited to take part in Orly Orbach’s Mixed Tape Museum to illustrate songs that remind them of home and transport themselves into the drawings using a live-feed projector, which will be turned into short films that will be displayed in the museum galleries. Storyteller and children’s author Sandra Agard will run Interactive Storytelling sessions; Telling Tales includes stories from Africa, the Caribbean and around the world which will weave a magical spell or two. Visitors will find out how rhythms and beats tell a story and create a community in the hands-on One-Drum Djembe workshop by learning the basics of traditional Ghanaian Djembe drumming techniques with Abass Dodoo.

One Song was commissioned by Counterpoint Arts and funded by Hackney Council’s Shoreditch and Hoxton Art Fund, created from a levy on developers to support arts and culture programmes that bring different communities together.

One Song runs from Tuesday 25th October 2022 – Sunday 5th February 2023 at Museum of the Home, 136 Kingsland Road, London E2 8EA. Find out more here.

The singers are Alessandra Liguori, Alicia Rodriguez, Anisha Pucadyil, Audrey Harrison, Çiğdem Doğus, Fatimah Soraya Nobeebaccus, Francesca Camozzi, Hacer Karababa, Handan Karakuş, Jasmina Dimitrijevic, Liya Takie, Majlinda Xhaferraj, Primla Bhambri, Saeeda Banu, Yuko Tsukahara Gaydu

Image - Kadir Karababa

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