Audio Accompaniment

Charlie Hooker

Research output: Non-textual outputExhibition


AUDIO ACCOMPANIMENT accompanied the John Cage exhibition, Every Day is a Good Day, April-June 2011. Many thousands of people visited the installation, which was featured on the DLWP website. The gallery also organized a Vimeo broadcast of an interview with Hooker concerning the work. The project overall featured contributions from researchers based at the universities of Brighton and Reading. Postgraduate students from University of Brighton were also invited to contribute to a supporting exhibition. AUDIO ACCOMPANIMENT features a MIDI-controlled grand ‘Clavinova’ grand piano, which is triggered ‘live’ by cosmic ray particles to play a never-ending sequence of notes. The keys of the MIDI-controlled piano move in a ghostly, magical way to produce sound each time a radioactive ‘stardust’ particle hits the Geiger counter, MIDI controller and laptop that are all connected to the piano via its USB input. The piano was sponsored by Yamah UK and involved direct negotiations and modifications between Hooker, the DLWP and Yamaha. Cosmic ray particles pass through each square metre of the earth approximately every 3 seconds, so that the MIDI/Geiger counter-controlled sequence sets up an on-going series of random notes and harmonies, creating silences, then flurries of activity in a mysterious and intriguing way. The particle activity is thought by scientists to have an impact on our current weather patterns and the work was developed in collaboration with meteorologists from the University of Reading to help them explain this process through an accompanying text. The installation`s inherent concepts have a particular affinity to Cage`s work and his general philosophy regarding chance and belief systems. The notion of stars, cosmic rays and the universe allude to our own mortality and unpredictability, so that the idea of this somewhat ghostly work accompanying the changing installation of this particular dead artist`s work had a specific poignancy.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2011
EventEveryday is a Good Day - De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill, UK
Duration: 1 Jun 2011 → …

Bibliographical note


  • John Cage
  • De la Warr Pavillion
  • Vimeo
  • MIDI
  • Yamaha Clavinova
  • cosmic ray
  • Geiger counter
  • weather patterns
  • installation
  • audio


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