An intricate homage to the human voice.

Step inside polyphony, an immersive audio installation composed from the weaving and splicing of conversations with people across the country.

How many times have you cleared your throat today?
Has your voice ever surprised you?

In here is a detailed tapestry of composition. Voices that have changed dramatically, trained voices, shy voices. Voices that have been quietened. Voices ready to sing. Listen a while.

A flurry of laughter
A circle of ums and errs
A song of breath
A wall of tongues meeting teeth

In the autumn of last year Verity and her collaborators started interviewing people about their voices. From Middlesborough to London, Cumbria to Bristol, they asked people about the way they speak and sing, listened to their stories that have shaped their voices.

polyphony captures these conversations in intricate detail. So we can hear all the unique sounds that surround the words. Swallows, breaths, hesitations. In a time of distance, this is a celebration of the intimate, deeply human noises we can only hear close-up.

“Remarkable, a chorus of sighs, ums, ahs, and laughter probing how we feel about our voices. Music was woven throughout with chords, humming, and beatboxing spilling over into beautiful song.” – The Times

Conceived and composed by Verity Standen
Composed by Yas Clarke
Designed by Ben Pacey
Supported by Coombe Farm Studios
Produced by MAYK
Commissioned by Bristol New Music and supported by Arts Council England

Explore the voices of polyphony

We have created an online playlist featuring extracts from interviews with the 32 voices that make up polyphony. LISTEN HERE

Information for Programmers

polyphony premiered at Mayfest 2022 in Bristol, and is now available for touring. Please contact Kate Yedigaroff at MAYK and read our information for programmers page for more details.

With thanks thanks to: