On Friday 26 August at our first Late Night Live event, Nocturne, we had the pleasure of Wayne McGregor|Random Dance performing a duet in the Sunley Gallery, Festival Chamber Orchestra performing Sir Wilhelm Herschel Oboe Concertos with the backdrop of Paloma Polo’s Path of Totality, Austen Scully’s beautiful improvisations reverberating around the North Gallery, sound artist Robert Jarvis and astronomer Brendan Owens talking about the sound of stars and Zoe Laughlin’s intriguing lecture.
The evening made connections between music, science, astronomy, mathematics and sound, to complement our inaugural exhibition Revealed: Turner Contemporary Opens.
As I listened to Robert Jarvis talk about his project aroundNorth I wondered whether Sir Wilhelm Herschel had taken inspiration from the stars to write his oboe concertos.
Who can tell whether the creative thinking that Herschel employed in creating music aided his discovery of Uranus, or whether Herschel’s interest in mathematics and astronomy resonated in his music. Nevertheless the oboe concertos sounded wonderful as it resonated through the Sunley Gallery to end the evening.