FLO has been an idea for a long time coming. Toby and I first spoke about the idea a few years ago which at that time involved lighting a large shopping centre roof. We offered up a simple idea with a twist for the brief, something that could control the ceiling lighting from the ground, and so, the Fragmented Light Orchestra was born.

To be able to musically play a sculpture or a building with sound and light is an interesting place to start. How can we make something that resonates with all of us, from any musical or non-musical background? How can we build an idea that not only gives us license to improvise without fear but also brings together seemingly random members of the public as one orchestra to play together? How is it possible to light up a building through direct interaction, engulfed in lighting that resonates from the strings and bounces from the surrounding architecture? FLO will make this possible.

We didn’t win the bid for the shopping centre, but the idea stuck and it continued to develop. So many ideas and possibilities came from this process of questioning which brings us to the here and now. We have a great team on board the project from 3D design experts, consultants, production engineers and musicians, all of whom have had an input into the ongoing realisation of the project. It is thanks to them that the project has now secured funding.

Thanks to those involved so far and thanks to Leeds Inspired and Arts Council England for investing in the Fragmented Light Orchestra and to associates, Opera North as we develop this new work.

We’ll be launching FLO to the public in May 2017 with a view to touring it across the country and internationally afterwards. I’ll be posting updates as we go here, as will Toby about his musical thoughts on the project. Thanks for taking the time to check out what it’s all about.