Monday, July 12, 2010

July 10th. Day 1 at Banning

Today was a day of late starts and great surprises. First, a "meeting" on the 9th with some friends went a bit over. That is to say, until 2:00 in the morning. Though 2 is not what we may have referred to as a late night in the old days, 8 am really hurt (those of you reading this who above age 30 will know what I mean). However, After a quick breakfast and gathering a few extra sundries and borrowing a few more things from my brother Mike, I was on the road. Then quite to my surprise, I received a phone call from a friend of mine in Germany (also one I have not really spent much time with since around 2001), Nina G├╝hlstorff, who announced her intention to come to Chicago next week as the beginning of a three week long vacation starting in Chicago and ending in New Orleans. After lengthy negotiations with the Germans, now their plan is to take a quick detour and fly north to Minnesota where they will join me later this week at Whitewater State Park where I will be doing a preview hike for World Listening Day which will be shot by videographer Jason Schumacher (another German I think?). Nina is an old friend of mine who I met in Krakow, Poland while studying there in 1997 and she is also a theater director who is well established in the German theater. Her husband Hans Gyorg is the dramaturge of the Dresden Opera.

So, that was a nice surprise, as was meeting my friend and fellow composer and violist Chris Chelgren here at Banning upon my arrival. Chris has been very gracious in offering to come out to the parks to help out making noise on some of the days the tour is taking place. Banning is filled with interesting soundscapes and old abandoned mining buildings along the Quarry Loop Trail. It was an active quarry mine until about 1915 and the juxtaposition of the natural sounds of the park and the manipulation of that natural space by man made features provides an incredible variety of sonic spaces as well as really interesting visuals.

Today I got settled in to my new surroundings and did a bit of hiking on various trails including the quarry loop as well as doing a little snooping around in the Sandstone and Hinkley areas.

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