(...) · Art/Aesthetics · Performativity · Sonic/Musical

Some History of Piano Destroyers

Disclaimer: The content you are about to see contains graphic images of pianos being destroyed in different ways. Some viewers may find the following videos offensive. If so, you are not advised to watch the following.


*As one might imagine, there have been thousands of undocumented piano destructions all over the world. This list is a just a brief compilation of pianos being destroyed under different contexts/circumstances (artistic or not) and it does not represent an actual chronology of piano destruction. 


“Participatory Performance. Background Sound Thunder and Lighting. The Piano is a powerful instrument of sound to convey the message of Sacrifice I wish to convey to the Universe. The Sounds of its Destruction gives full voice to Sacrifice: To the Destruction Creation in it cycle of Creation is giving us time to understand the preciousness of Mortal Life that it never be given up to or for Sacrifice of any kind… If we must have WAR send our PIANOS to WAR. If we must have VIOLENCE send our PIANOS to VIOLENCE, I dare YOU to HATE your PIANO to fill it with your HATE and BIGOTRY and Let Creation Know your PIANO’S Life does not compare to the Miracle of Life WE MORTALS are and that OUR PIANO is the SACRIFICE TO THAT FACT…As for the Egg and the Feathers they are the subtle aspect the preparation for the SPIRITUL BONDING with the PIANO: The Egg when it is held gently in one’s cupped hands and You imagine the worst aspects of Your Character and then crush the Egg on the PIANO you have committed Yourself to the surrender of those worst aspects to the Sacrifice the PIANO is… The Feathers placed on top of the crushed Egg are the signal to the Angels to carry the Sacrifice to a place of Spiritual Redemption.”

Piano Burning by Annea Lockwood. Festival PiedNu 2016

Annea Lockwood’s classic performance music work, Piano Burning (1968) was composed when she found abandoned upright pianos on the banks of the Thames River in London during the 1960s.

Busy Signals for 10 decomposing pianos by Paul Wiancko. Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival, 2015.

Performed by Paul Wiancko, Emilie-Anne Gendron, Ryan McCullough, Elena Urioste, Ayane Kozasa, Charles Noble, Curt Spiel, Kevin Krentz, Meeka Quan DiLorenzo, Brittany Boulding Breeden, and Sonja Myklebust. Commissioned by the Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival and premiered at the grand opening of Howard Johnson’s Piano Garden on Signal Hill in Twisp, WA on July 26, 2015.

The End of Civilisation by Douglas Gordon, 2012.

“I wanted to do something with a piano in a landscape of some significance and I suppose, as a Scotsman, there’s nothing more significant than the border. I thought it was beautiful to look from one country into another and I liked the idea that Hadrian’s Wall is, under a certain interpretation, a great end of civilization…  I was overwhelmed to be in a landscape of such beauty, and with such a huge unfathomable history.” —Douglas Gordon


“SPATCHCOCK’ nights were legendary: hosted by a community of extraordinarily creative people living in amongst the warehouses in Overbuy Road, London. Raucous, intense, powerful, FUN. As the evenings progressed, one could be guaranteed of becoming quite mashed-up, and continuing well into the following morning… SPATCHCOCK had asked if I would play an old upright piano – one they were looking to dispose of. Not wishing to pay for its removal, they asked that, as part of the performance, would I mind progressively destroying it… Armed with tools from Rupert Lees’s nearby workshop, I set about the task of a ‘demolition performance’. The video ends with an ‘encore’ performed off-camera, on another upright, elsewhere in the warehouse. The debris from the demolition was recycled, and fashioned into functional or decorative items by Rupert Lees; and the strung, iron frame, is still in use today, at Ellis Gardiner’s nearby studio.”

Yosuke YAMASHITA “Burning Piano 2008,” March 8, 2008 at Noto Resort Area Masuhogaura, Shika-machi, Ishikawa, Japan) Related Event of the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa Third Anniversary Exhibition, Graphism in the Wilderness: Kiyoshi Awazu Exhibition.

“In the upcoming event, I will encounter an old piano built decades ago, otherwise destined to be discarded. For this old piano, I would like to perform a funeral requiem with the deepest love from my heart. At the same time, I would like my performance to pay homage to the 1973’s performance (this film work “Burning Piano” by Kiyoshi Awazu was presented in 1974,) as well as to Kiyoshi Awazu, the artist of richly experimental spirit who created it, and to all experimental avant-garde art movements of the sixties.” Text Via

fig_1.jpgLeonhard Lapin, Ülevi Eljand, Ando Keskküla, “Trio for Piano,” 1990, happening in Tallinn Art Hall, 1990. Image courtesy of the Art Museum of Estonia, Tallinn.

One of the most well-known events organized by SOUP was the happening Trio for Piano, held on International Women’s Day on March 8, 1969, in the main hall of the State Art Institute. This event wasn’t called Trio for Piano initially (the name was given retrospectively by Lapin), nor was it – at least not unambiguously – understood as a “happening” at the time. There are no recordings of this event, only the memories of the participants and the audience, according to which this happening can be, cautiously, described as follows (keeping in mind that memories are rather fluid).

As the Art Institute had recently acquired a new piano, the old piano was donated to students who had requested it. According to Lapin, they had heard that pianos were being destroyed by young and radical artists all over Europe. The students were generally familiar with the phenomena of happenings and they had organized some similar events at the Art Institute and elsewhere. International Women’s Day was celebrated all over the country with performances, lectures, and other events, and the art students made their own contribution to this celebration. In front of an audience of other students, they put the piano at the center of their activities and played on it and with it in every possible way. For example, Künnapu played the piano while reading an architectural drawing as a “score;” others painted smiling lips on the instrument and “made love” to the piano before moving it to one side and breaking it into small pieces, which were thrown to the audience to take away as souvenirs. During the event the artists also considered whether the piano should be thrown out of the window onto the street crossing next to the art school, which was known as a dangerous place where a lot of accidents happened; however in the end, this idea was abandoned. The audience was excited and reacted to all of the activities energetically; the event was remembered many years later as a legendary disturbance, but it had no serious consequences for the organizers. Text Via


a12Wiener Gruppe – 2nd Literary Cabaret – 15. 4. 1959. Porrhaus, Vienna. Friedrich Achleitner, Konrad Bayer, Gerhard Rühm and Oswald Wiener.

Tthe evening (of 15th april, 1959) began as promisingly as the first one. As soon as the first spectator entered the auditorium we started to play the tape recording of an oil—extraction plant transmitted by loudspeaker, which we kept going for about three-quarters of an hour till the beginning of the performance proper. This created a technical atmosphere and made for nervousness in the crowded audience (there were about 700 people). Continue HERE

Continue reading “Some History of Piano Destroyers”

Film/Video/New Media · Sonic/Musical · Vital-Edible-Health

On the Sound of Rain

Direction: Yugo Nakamura (tha ltd.)
Edit / Programming: Naoki Nishimura (tha ltd.)
Shooting Assistant: Koji Takahashi (tha ltd.)
Sound Edit: Mishima Toyoaki
Sound Recording: NHK Program Design Center Sound Design Division

Blog-Sites · Earthly/Geo/Astro · Public Space · Sonic/Musical

Sounds From Dangerous Places: Sonic Journalism | Peter Cusack

‘What can we learn of dangerous places by listening to their sounds?’

‘Sonic Journalism’ is the aural equivalent of photojournalism. It describes the practice where field recordings play a major role in the discussion and documentation of places, issues and events and where listening to sounds of all kinds strongly informs the approach to research and following narratives whilst on location.

Peter Cusack: Recent travels have brought me into contact with some difficult and potentially dangerous places. Most are areas of major environmental/ecological damage, but others are nuclear sites or the edges of military zones. The danger is not necessarily to a short-term visitor, but to the people of the area who have no option to leave or through the location’s role in geopolitical power structures. Dangerous places can be both sonically and visually compelling, even beautiful and atmospheric. There is, often, an extreme dichotomy between an aesthetic response and knowledge of the ‘danger’, whether it is pollution, social injustice, military or geopolitical.

Places visited include:

Chernobyl exclusion zone, Ukraine;

Caspian oil fields, Azerbaijan;

Tigris and Euphrates rivers valleys in South Eastern Turkey threatened by massive dam building projects;

North Wales, UK, where Chernobyl fallout still affects sheep farming practice; nuclear, military and greenhouse gas sites in the UK, including Sellafield, Dungeness, Bradwell, Sizewell, Thetford Forest, Rainham and Uttlesford

Hear some samples from Chernobyl HERE

All text and Images via Sounds From Dangerous Places

Sonic/Musical · Wandercasts

Femina Potens 01

Considering that our previous musical mixes have an abundance of male artists, Femina Potens (Latin: Powerful Woman) will be a new series of sonic assemblages celebrating music made only by women. This series will include mainstream artists as well as less popular sonic explorers from different locations and time periods.

We already have a long waiting list, but please give us recommendations or pull our ears.

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Starting Time= Artist / Song / Album

00:00:00′ = Wandercast Intro (Delia Derbyshire / AIR (BBC version)/ Enter the Void)
00:01:36′ = Asia Argento / My Stomach Is The Most Violent Of All Of Italy (With The Legendary Tigerman) / Total Entropy
00:05:08′ = Selda / Yaylalar / Selda
00:08:45′ = Julia Holter / Horns Surrounding Me / Loud City Song
00:13:30′ = THEESatisfaction / Queen County (4 Women) (feat. Gift Uh Gab & JusMoni) / And That’s Your Time
00:17:58′ = Suphala / Eight and a Half Birds / Alien Ancestry
00:23:57′ = Tammy / Perro Que Ladra (No Muerde) / Girls In The Garage Vol.11
00:26:11′ = Jill House on trills and non pulmonic airstream (excerpt)1995.
00:26:24′ = Solex / Low Kick And Hard Bop / Low Kick And Hard Bop
00:29:23′ = Tirzah & Micachu / I’m Not Dancing / We Make Colourful Music Because We Dance In The Dark
00:31:12′ = Suzanne Ciani / Princess with Orange Feet / Lixiviation
00:34:28′ = Kyoka / Lined Up / Is (Is Superpowered)
00:38:52′ = Lurdez Da Luz / Ping Pong / Rolê – New Sounds of Brazil
00:42:54′ = Leslie Winer / Flove / &c.
00:48:10′ = Arctic winds (Field recordings – Unknown source)
00:48:52′ = Tagaq / Surge / Sinaa
00:51:40′ = Kuupuu / Kissamuori Krapulassa (excerpt) / Spinning On Air session
00:57:40′ = An excerpt from Judith Butler speaking about turning rage and grief into theory and reflection. (2014) + Colleen / The Cello Song / Mort Aux Vaches

Assembled by Wanderlust

Sonic/Musical · Wandercasts

Music for Creative Reading 03

Keep Reading Keep Reading Keep Reading Keep Reading

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Starting Time= Artist / Song / Album

00:00:00′ = Wandercast Intro
00:00:18′ = Roedelius Schneider / Hohner Omen / Tiden
00:02:36′ = Jon Brooks / Neap Tide / Shapwick
00:05:10′ = Seaworthy and Taylor Deupree / February 22, 2013 / Wood, Winter, Hollow
00:06:32′ = Sawako / Nemumel / nu.it
00:08:08′ = Sustainer / Diámetro / Escala No Uniforme
00:13:52′ = The The / Between Moons / Tee Sessions EP
00:15:34′ = Hans Appelqvist / Sperma / Sjunga slutet nu
00:17:56′ = Masayoshi Fujita / Snow Storm / Stories
00:24:08′ = Rod Hamilton / Agnes / Teal
00:26:54′ = Ben Lukas Boysen / You’ll Miss Us One Day / Gravity
00:29:30′ = Fax / Gravity / The New Rage
00:33:52′ = Eden Ahbez / Myna Bird / Eden’s Island
00:36:08′ = Scissors And Sellotape / For The Tired And Ill At Ease 07 / For The Tired And Ill At Ease
00:39:36′ = Tiago Benzinho / Portrait of an American High School / Roses of Time I
00:42:52′ = Modiac / Bimbase / Internes Gespräch
00:48:56′ = Mouse On Mars / Mood Leck Backlash / Glam
00:52:33′ = Mammane Sani et son Orgue / Lidda / La Musique Electronique du Niger
00:57:56′ = Kuupuu / Susipoika Siniset / Lumen Tädhen
00:62:04′ = Deep Magic / Alone In Her Cave / Reflections Of Most Forgotten Love
00:66:48′ = Gold Panda / S950 / Half Of Where You Live
00:68:32′ = Tba / Trepa N / Clicks & Cuts 4
00:70:28′ = Julien Mier / Little Footsteps / Have Courage Funny Thing
00:74:38′ = P.lewis / wine and roses waltz / Music of the Victorian & Edwardian Era Vol. 2
00:77:37′ = Derek Gripper / Kaounding Cissoko / One Night on Earth: Music from the Strings of Mali
00:81:52′ = Harold Budd / Jane 6 / Jane 1-11
00:86:08′ = Uncle Skeleton / Place Pigalle / All Too Human
00:88:08′ = Molly Roth / Plant Talk / Plant Talk Productions
00:88:26′ = Mary Lattimore / Poor Daniel / Withdrawing Room
00:90:53′ = Extro Wanderlust

Assembled by Wanderlust

Image above: Illustration by Kirstie Belle

Sonic/Musical · Wandercasts

Around the World in a Few Beats

It is not quite the entire world but here we go.

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Starting Time= Artist / Song / Album

00:00:00′ = Wandercast Intro
00:00:10′ = Charles Wilp / Pink Carpet / Charles Wilp Fotografiert Bunny (Germany)
00:02:00′ = SPYE / Oops Sorry / Oops Sorry (UK)
00:05:37′ = Richi & Viņa / Tin Tin Tin / Karaļūdens (Latvia)
00:07:14′ = Biga / Lanciorime / La Sete (Italy)
00:10:10′ = Kern Koppen / 1+1=ÉÉN / Één (Nederlands)
00:13:03′ = JZA / Result / MeJicanSoulTape Part III (Mexico?)
00:13:54′ = Minizza / La Voyage Immobile / Mind The Gap 105 (France)
00:17:10′ = The Neil Cowley Trio / Winterlude / Touch and Flee (UK)
00:19:01′ = Maga Bo / Rapinbolada (Feat. Gaspar) / Rolê (Brazil)
00:22:33′ = Tinariwen / Tiliaden Osamnat / Tassili (Mali)
00:25:42′ = Cosmic Analog Ensemble / Station V / “Subway to the Minaret” (Lebanon)
00:27:38′ = Excerpt from Invisible Invaders (1959) (USA)
00:28:13′ = Jonwayne / Black Magic / Rap Album One (USA)
00:31:12′ = Extro Wanderlust

Assembled by Wanderlust

Sonic/Musical · Wandercasts

Eclectic Selection 10

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Starting Time= Artist / Song / Album

00:00:00′ = Wandercast Intro
00:00:17′ = Meridian Brothers / Niebla Morada (Purple Haze) / Niebla Morada (Purple Haze)
00:03:30′ = Wu-Tang Clan / Heaterz (Feat. Cappadonna): excerpt / Wu-Tang Forever + Ikue Mori & Maja S.K. Ratkje / Sand Castle / Scrumptious Sabotage
00:04:46′ = Osunlade / What Gets You High? / Dionne
00:08:12′ = Omar Souleyman / Arabic Dabke / Highway To Hassake – Folk And Pop Sounds Of Syria
00:09:52′ = To Rococo Rot / Untitled 01 / Kölner Brett (edited)
00:11:22′ = Acid Pauli / The Gap On The Grip / Trust
00:14:56′ = Infinite Third / (residu) / (eardrops2)
00:16:32′ = Red Axes / Only A Clown Can Catch An Axe / Ballad Of The Ice
00:22:15′ = Gobby / Message from John / Wakng Thrst For Seeping Banhee
00:22:53′ = Arai Toshiya / Sabre Dance (sabres of boss mix ) / Kawaii Vol.8
00:26:07′ = Dieter Zimmermann / Whole Lotta Love / The In-Kraut, Vol. 3
00:29:51′ = Klaus Johann Grobe / Kothek / Im Sinne Der Zeit
00:33:16′ = Claudette et Ti Pierre / Zanmi Camarade (Tropical Treats Edit) / Haiti Direct EP
00:39:46′ = Mandré / Isle De Joie / Island Music
00:43:16′ = Cliché / Helicon / La Souterraine Vol.2
00:47:20′ = Lone / Airglow Fires / Reality Testing
00:52:39′ = Bewilderbeast / Severed / Unreal Estate
00:58:40′ = Kris Bowers / Rigamortis (Kendrick Lamar Cover) / Camaleón EP
00:63:26′ = Turning Torso / Mosco / Nightfly Vol. 3
00:64:26′ = Hiroki Sasajima / Invisible sculpture / Circle Winds
00:66:45′ = Jungle Hell (excerpt 1956)
00:67:06′ = Seftel / Architects / Seftel

Assembled by Wanderlust