In Dialog: Rainbow Chan – Griffin Theatre Firm

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20.07.22

Rainbow Chan is the sensible sound designer behind the world of Golden Blood (黄金血液) by Merlynn Tong. That includes karaoke, modern digital beats and Chinese language ritual music, the soundscape she has created is superb, expansive and evocative. We sat down with Rainbow to debate her profession, her music and her expertise engaged on the manufacturing!

That is your first time collaborating right here at Griffin—welcome to the Grif-fam! Are you able to introduce us to your self and your work?

Good day! My title is Rainbow Chan. I’m an digital producer, singer and interdisciplinary artist with a background in experimental pop music and efficiency. I used to be born in Hong Kong and migrated to Australia on the age of six. My pursuits are within the politics of cultural illustration, the interaction between copy and authentic, and the diasporic creativeness. I’m at present based mostly in Sydney on Gadigal land. That is really my first time composing and designing sound for theatre.

You’re employed with sound and design throughout many mediums. What’s the identical and what’s completely different about working in a theatre area?

The method of creating music for theatre is totally completely different to how I’d strategy music-making in different contexts. After I make pop music or membership music, the expertise is often fairly solitary and fluid. I wish to take my time to therapeutic massage concepts. That being mentioned, I’ve composed for advertisements, tv and movie earlier than so I’m aware of working to a artistic temporary and to a strict deadline. However what stunned me about working in a theatre area is how dynamic and collaborative the method is. I actually loved seeing how manufacturing, creatives, forged, stage supervisor and director all labored collectively to downside remedy, to think about, to experiment, to carry a totally new little world into existence. You don’t see gentle for days throughout tech week and the pile of soiled laundry will get ridiculous, nevertheless it’s all value it when the present lastly comes collectively.

What impressed you when engaged on Golden Blood? And what had been the largest challenges you confronted?

We needed to create a sound world that will be paying homage to Singapore however open-ended sufficient to mirror a broader cultural context. I drew upon numerous East Asian references together with karaoke bars, Teresa Teng, and basic triad films together with Younger and Harmful/古惑仔 and YouTube movies of illicit gang chants. My most particular musical inspiration, which additionally turned out to be probably the most difficult, was Chinese language ritual music. I encounter this sort of music on a regular basis at Taoist temples and have at all times appreciated the timbre of the drums, gongs, muyu (wood fish) and the melismatic, vivid vocal chanting. The problem was presenting this music in an abstracted kind that might be unconventional and expansive. While brainstorming, I started to see a commonality within the repetitive constructions in Chinese language ritual music and in techno. Each types have a driving, cacophonous flavour that induces a state of trance. The music of Golden Blood grew to become a convergence of those two musical coordinates, which we affectionately known as “Hell Membership.”

How would you describe your work in 3 phrases?

Current In Between.

What had been your take-aways from this expertise and the present?

I now know methods to swear heaps in Hokkien and Singlish! All jokes apart, Merlynn and Charles [Wu, performer] are so enigmatic onstage and I nonetheless cry each single bloody time on the finish of the present. The entire course of has made me admire the nuances, logistics, teamwork and thought that go into good storytelling.

There may be lower than a fortnight to catch Golden Blood (黄金血液) on the SBW Stables Theatre earlier than it closes on 30 July. Guide now!

Credit:
Picture 1: Zan Wimberley
Photos 2 and three: Rainbow Chan

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