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Jennifer Walshe + Mocrep at Chicago Athletic Association Hotel

  • Chicago Athletic Association Hotel 12 South Michigan Avenue Chicago, IL, 60603 United States (map)

Jennifer Walshe

Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

$10 ESS Members / $15 General Admission

Madison Ballroom
Chicago Athletic Association hotel
12 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603



Experimental Sound Studio, in collaboration with MOCREP,  is pleased to present a performance of works by Jennifer Walshe on April 10th at the Chicago Athletic Association hotel. This exciting interdisciplinary collaboration between Walshe and Mocrep, will include moments of karaoke, sounds of the outdoors and sometimes no sound at all. This performance has been facilitated by the Aisteach Institute, the Avant Garde Archive of Ireland, and will feature the Chicago premier of the film, AN GLÉACHT. Jennifer Walshe's Chicago appearance is sponsored by the Sound Department of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

The program continues an established relationship between Walshe and Mocrep. They began working together in 2015, when Mocrep presented her work Hygiene as part of the Mathias Spahlinger Festival There is No Repetition. In 2016 they presented the US premiere of her barbie opera, XXX_LIVE_NUDE_GIRLS and have performed Volunteer Chorus, a choral work which mines social media platforms for content, at the international Summer Courses for New Music Darmstadt (2016) and the Art Institute of Chicago (2017).


Excerpts from Always Arranged But Never Complete: Caoimhín Breathnach’s Golden Cassette (2017) by Jennifer Walshe

A Folk Song Collection (2011) by Jennifer Walshe

Dirty White Fields (2001) by Jennifer Walshe

AN GLÉACHT (2015) by Jennifer Walshe

As you entered the space you heard excerpts from Always Arranged But Never Complete: Caoimhín Breathnach’s Golden Cassette, a collaboration between Walshe and philosopher Timothy Morton. The cassette is part of Walshe's Aisteach Project, which attempts to describe a fictional history of avant garde music in Ireland. The project, according to Walshe is “a communal thought experiment, a revisionist exercise in “what if?”, a huge effort by many people to create an alternative history of avant-garde music in Ireland, to write our ancestors into being and shape their stories with care.” 

Another outgrowth of the Aisteach Project is ostensibly the work of outsider artist Caoimhín Breathnach (1934-2009), who lived as a recluse in Knockvicar, Co. Roscommon for all of his life. Breathnach’s artistic practice focussed on the creation of “subliminal” tapes and films which he believed possessed the capacity to shift consciousness. In these works, Ogham magickal scales, crystallography, astronomy, folklore & natural phenomena are combined with found audio and visual material to produce an idiosyncratic, esoteric system of correspondences. AN GLÉACHT is one of Breathnach’s last projects, which combines subliminal tapes and films with filmed footage showing a sequence of occult rituals. 

The phenomenon of the haunting melody poses a mystery for science. How do these infinite musical loops – torturing people for hours or even days – develop? Is there a formula for the perfect earworm? These questions are explored in A Folksong Collection, which consists of 30 short song fragments. The lyrics of the songs are things Walshe overheard people saying and scraps of read text. These song fragments are presented as folk artifacts and notated as bare-bones melody and rhythm. 

Dirty White Fields is a controlled framework for improvisation by solo performer, who plays both violin and vocalizes. It has been reworked for this performance for cello.

To learn more about Mocrep, visit 

Mocrep at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (photo, Deidre Huckabay)

Mocrep at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (photo, Deidre Huckabay)