hal kelly

Graduates 2022: Hal Kelly: Digital Music and Sound Arts

“I have had the opportunity here to develop my practice in ways that I never could have foreseen. This is thanks to the amazing teaching staff we have on the DMSA course, as well as my fellow students, who I’ve learned at least as much from!”

Hi Hal – please tell us a bit about your work and your influences

“I am a composer, producer and performer who makes electronic music for screen and stage, has self-released two experimental pop albums, and has experience in acting, performance art, sound art and 3D animation. My final degree project is a 60 minute performance piece in which I portray an alien who has landed on Earth. Through live electronic music, meditation-through-sound and ecstatic dance, the alien attempts to inspire a sense of wonder and presence in a society increasingly disconnected from the natural world. The work is primarily influenced by my readings on Buddhist philosophy, mindfulness and the nature of the self, as well as taking inspiration from David Bowie, Sun Ra, and other extra-terrestrial musicians.

“I am also part of an improvised electronic music duo called We Come In Peace. Esme Wright (also on the DMSA course) plays the drum machine while I loop synths and vocals, and the results are always as bizarre as they are danceable. It’s difficult to know where our influences lie, but if I had to name three top influential artists I’d probably say Caribou, Animal Collective and LCD Soundsystem.”

How have you found your course and time at Brighton?

“I have had a great time at Brighton. Although there were parts of my course that were unavoidably affected by COVID, I have had the opportunity here to develop my practice in ways that I never could have foreseen. This is thanks to the amazing teaching staff we have on the DMSA course, as well as my fellow students, who I’ve learned at least as much from!”

How did you choose your course – why did you choose to study DMSA?

“I chose to study DMSA after I had dropped out of a Contemporary Performance Practice course in Glasgow. I knew I wanted to study music and sound, but I wanted something outside the box and experimental too. DMSA was the only course that seemed to tick all those boxes.”

What are your plans after graduation?

“After I graduate my plan is to move back to Bristol where I’m from and find more work in the theatre scene there. I already perform in the South West regularly with poet Chris White, and we are currently developing a new comedy musical about the end of the world. Alongside music for theatre I also intend to keep releasing music and performing my improvised electronic music sets.”

Visit Hal’s website is halkelly.com and his Instagram @halkellymusic

Visit the Graduate Show

Find out more about Digital Music and Sound Arts

 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.