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'Imagined Voices', a research by Yannis Kyriakides, deals with a form of composition, music with on-screen text, in which the dynamic between sound, words and visuals is explored. The research explores the ideas around these 'music-text-films', and attempts to explain how meaning is constructed in the interplay between the different layers of media. Issues that initially arose out of the research, were directly related to the question of 'voice': Who is narrating? And where is the voice located? These questions became more pertinent after noticing a phenomenon occurring during performances of these works: that when we read text synchronised to music, we become very aware of an inner voice silently reading along. This effect of hearing one's own voice in the music, was a discovery that had many consequences for the ways in which the ideas about listening and the role of multimedia could function within music. In the creative work of the research, that has resulted in over thirty works of 'music-text-film' the media are set up to highlight ways of listening that puts emphasis on the role of the listener/spectator. A state of limbo is created between the narrative voice of the text and the implied voice of the music, due to the absence of a conventional focal point to pin it on - an actor or a singer. The thesis suggests that because of this vacancy and the way the projected word takes the place of the sung or spoken voice, the inner voice of the audience becomes activated. This then becomes a vital immersive dimension in the performance, as the inner voices of the audience find their place within the fabric of the music.
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