Time Unwrapped: Memento

12th January 2018 19:30
Kings Place
90 York Way, London, N1 9AG
Schubert String Quintet in C Major
Martin Suckling Quintet
New poetry by Frances Leviston
Poems by Emily Dickinson

Aurora Principal Players
Stuart Parkin speaker
Frances Leviston poet

New scientific advances are poised to revolutionise computer memory technology, unlocking huge benefits to society. At the cutting edge of this transformation is the Piezoelectronic Transduction Memory Device (PETMEM) – a major international project which promises a hundredfold reduction in computer chip power consumption and a colossal leap forward in computing power. This extraordinary technology harnesses the so-called Piezoelectric effect: the remarkable process by which a tiny number of materials generate an electrical charge when forced to change shape under pressure, and vice versa.

Inspired by this scientific innovation, Aurora and Poet in the City have joined forces for a cross-art form collaboration that illuminates themes of compression, energy, acoustics and memory.  Poet Frances Leviston and composer Martin Suckling have worked together to create electrically-charged new poetry and music which asks the question: what happens when matter, music, and language are placed under pressure?

The artists have responded by drawing on the memory of two great forbearers in poetry and music, Emily Dickinson and Schubert. Influenced by the voltage Dickinson achieves in her densely packed poems, Leviston’s new set of poems wonders how Dickinson might have responded to the PETMEM technology; the poems draw upon a range of references from female scientists involved in the project to the raw materials used in the technology and the eloquent metaphors scientists have used to explain this novel deviceIn a similar vein, Suckling explores the idea of music under pressure with a new chamber work in which fragments of Schubert’s great String Quintet are echoed, compressed, distorted and crystallised.

This special programme combines performances of the new commissions, works by Dickinson, and Schubert’s sublime String Quintet with by reflections from experimental physicist Stuart Parkin, one of the pioneers of PETMEM technology.

Commissioned by Bio Nano Consulting Ltd for the dissemination of PETMEM (Piezoelectronic Transduction Memory Device), a European Commission-funded project which brings together universities, research institutions and companies to explore low-voltage memory technologies.

This event is presented as part of Kings Place's Time Unwrapped programme.
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