Who are we?
I am very excited to bring you my project ‘Truth BeTold’. My vision is to bring together compelling elements of music, storytelling, technology and movement; I cannot make this happen without your support. Read on to find out how you can help, or check out the video!
My name is Shama Rahman and I am a singer, sitar player and composer. I’ve been awarded a ‘Take V’ composer’s residency and an Emerging Excellence Award for my music which I now want to bring to you with my 6-piece band.
I also have another life as a scientist and actor, and combining these two strands, I have years of experience producing and curating creative events and experiences that bring together different disciplines and art-forms.
I’m very lucky to be working with an amazing team of musicians, dancers, visual projection mapping artists and filmmakers who believe in 'Truth BeTold'. Now we just need your support.
We want to bring ‘Truth BeTold’ to you as an immersive performance and as a physical record.
‘Truth BeTold’ is a 16-track album of songs and poetic interludes which we have recorded. You can listen to a taster of the 9 songs in the album below.
If you like what you hear, for £9 you’ll be able to pre-order the whole 16-track album including 7 spokenword storytelling interludes with ‘Sitar soundscapes’. This is especially for our backers and you'll have it before anyone else before the general release!
It is the world’s first full live album recorded with the pioneering mi.mu gloves technology. By allowing me to play and control music through theatrical gestural movements in space, it has created a new unprecedented relationship between my music, the way I play it and the improvising musicians I play with. As a mi.mu glove artist-in-residence, I’ve been inspired to bring new impulses to the way I approach composition and improvisation.
The Sitar is what I play. But I don’t just play it in the classical Indian sense. It is an incredibly beautiful instrument and is sonically much more versatile than it has been known for.
With this record, the band and I are exploring electro-acoustic cross-genre songs that highlight the Sitar’s versatility with jazz improvisation, electronica, urban and worldbeats, Indian/Western classical melodies & folk storytelling.
The musicians on this record are:
MOBO-winning drummer Moses Boyd, bassist Inga Eichler, Saxophonist/flautist Rachel Bartlett, guitarist Christopher Lane, Christopher Barrett on the tuba, Sarathy Korwar on the tabla/KAOS pad, electronics/samples and co-producer Tilé Gichigi-Lipere, and myself on the Sitar, vocals, ukelele, Wurlitzer and mi.mu gloves. Recorded and co-produced by David Holmes from Soup Studios.
How Can You Support?
As independent artists, we are self-releasing and launching this album and we need your help.
Here’s what the funding means for the project:
The album will take wings and become the fully immersive experience it is dreaming of!
Full funding will allow us to -
Pay for rehearsals essential to incorporate the interactive visual and dance aspects of the immersive show at the Southbank May 24th.
Print CD copies of the album to put in your hands!
Working with a PR company who will make sure that there is a lasting legacy from the work that the artists have put into creating the album and performance. This could mean, articles in the national UK press, and radio play that your best friend back home might be able to hear!
Picture the scene - you're flicking through your favourite magazine or newspaper and suddenly you catch a familiar name - Shama Rahman Band - Imagine the pride you feel when you know that we couldn't have made it there without your help!
It's very difficult to sustain original, authentic and creative new artistic work today. There's simply no other way we can do this without your support for the projects you like - not just the art, but the artists with visions that come from the heart.
I've started the rewards at only £1, and even if money is not your forté right now (I get it, trust me!) you can show your support by sharing with your networks.
80% of our funding will come from our friends' recommendation, so big things can come from little clicks and two second shares!
The Immersive Performance
'Truth BeTold' is a transformative journey told through personal life experiences. This is lyrically, visually and sonically embodied through different water forms and audio field recordings such as playful creeks, melting river-flows, and the terrible calm beauty of the sea. These life stages will be thematically arranged into three chapters reflecting Sufi poet Rumi's questions: “Is it True?’, ‘Is it Necessary?’, ‘Is it Kind?’.
We want to showcase these storytelling songs with an immersive theatrical Sitar cabaret/libretto performance at the Southbank on May 24th. As part of The Alchemy festival, it will also be paired with a Steve Reich programme.
This performance will bring together many art-forms through creative artistic collaboration with musicians, dancers and visual projection mapping artists, developed through a series of public Lab sessions at the Southbank.
Using a pioneering movement approach, the mi.mu gloves will be used to improvise live and interact in real-time with the musicians, visuals and dancers to enable sensitive dramatic responses to the storylines within ‘Truth BeTold’.
I will be working with choreographer Jorge Crecis. He has had experience in using technology such as brain/pulse monitoring interactivity within dance. Using his practice-based PhD research investigating performers' practice of finding emotion through movement and participation, Jorge is particularly interested in working together to explore gestures in performance that best convey the story and meaning within the songs and spoken word lyrics in 'Truth BeTold'.
We also wish to explore interactivity with and choreography of a collective of dancers to set the story and expand the context for the music. This is a great partnership in this window of opportunity to explore the leading edge of technology interfacing with cross-arts creativity.
I will be working with visual artists Matteo Zamagni and Claudio Giambusso who use technology as a way of expression through their wide range of works, from Video Production/Direction to Motion Graphics, 3D Animations, VJ Performance, Realtime Generative Realtime Art and Interactive Installations. Matteo has been a Barbican Fish Island Lab resident and is a longterm collaborator of mine. Together with Claudio, within this performance he will be using projection mapping to experiment with creative visualisations and how to translate the metaphysical imagery within 'Truth BeTold' to generative visual compositions.
Filmmakers Swara Kadir and Margarita Milne are aspiring filmmakers. They are filming the entire artistic process of the project including the public Lab sessions, rehearsals, recording and Southbank performance. Their aim is to create a documentary of the world's first mi.mu gloves cross-arts performance and full album recording. Check out the rewards section if you want to be come to a special screening of this with the band!
We're keen for all backers to be involved throughout the whole process. If you have any questions, please get in touch and we'll do our best to answer them through this Kickstarter page.
Risks and challenges
Although Kickstarter is the best platform for independent artists there is a possibility that we may not be able to fund our album printing and promotion or creating an immersive performance with music, visuals and movement for the Southbank launch show if we don't reach our goal.
We are fully supported by the Southbank itself for the show such as rehearsal space, technical and production staffing.
I am confident working with the artistic team based on previous projects and a great working relationship.
I will bring over 10 years of experience as a creative producer myself to project managing the rehearsals, performance and album manufacturing. This is also my second album so I have a solid plan going through every part of the process of creating, producing and promoting an album.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)