Saturday, June 25, 2011

Nick Franglen underneath our Bridge!

I first heard about Nick Franglen when I was browsing through the Make Music NY 2011 site. His piece is called, "Hymn to Manhattan Bridge." What attracted me to his performance was his schedule. 12 AM to 12 AM. It was no typo. I had no excuse to miss this. I had 24 hours to make a visit. Nick is a British musician who's career spans from the early 90s to today. Nick has collaborated and written music for films, movies and other artists such as Bjork and Hole. His first album came out in 1997 when he was part of a duo, Lemon Jelly. Today, Nick is part of the electronic duo, Blacksand. They have performed in places that are seriously off the beaten path, like the inside of a submarine and abandoned facilities.

I guess it's no surprise that Nick chose to perform underneath the Manhattan Bridge for Make Music NY! Nick had a similar technique in creating a piece for the London Bridge during Fall of 2010 called, "Hymn to London Bridge." These pieces are also reliant on the footsteps of passing pedestrians and cyclists.

I found Nick talking to curious passerbys underneath the Archway of Manhattan Bridge. I photographed one of the pop-up pianos as I waited my turn. I also followed him out to see him pointing at the wires that were dangling up to the Bridge's walkway. Whoa.

Finally, it was my turn to speak with Nick! He is a lovely person. Very welcoming to everyone who wanted to speak with him about why he was there. He was running on the excitement of the day's event! Nick told me that there is a huge difference between the Hymns of London and Manhattan Bridge. Ours is much more abrasive and loud (why am I not surprised, haha). London's Hymn is more cuddly, soft and relaxing. After chatting about his music and how he liked his trip to New York, we finally bid adieu. And so the Summer of 2011 begins.

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