Until recently, the only music we’ve ever heard made-underwater is that of whales, which we sometimes play to lull ourselves to sleep. Then we saw this lovely excerpt from Breathe, a “water opera” performed by a group of experimental musicians, dancers and performance artists at Lawrence University.
“I wanted to see if I could make sound underwater,” said Music Director Loren Demster. “So I experimented with microphones underwater, I bought a hydrophone, I played the cello underwater.”
The video of the floating cellist is at once curiously calming, and heartening for the kind of unexpected poetry improvisation can yield.
We’ve since discovered other musicians that have explored making music under water. Its deep, slowed-down dreaminess does indeed remind us of whale songs.