In her music and conceptual work, Jennifer Walshe has always explored the way we as humans create oral histories, using her own body and all her vocal cords. Her songs are often highly idiosyncratic, virtually adhering to the composer and singer long after the sounds have passed her lips. And yet no piece by Jennifer Walshe is conceivable without an immediate audience and society as a larger sound space. Her compositions are poised in the tension between musique concrete, minimalism, electro-acoustic as well as song. They are characterized by fascinating exploratory themes and thus so suited for those less formal performance contexts that Walshe prefers for their delivery. Her pieces are as much at home in large opera houses and theatres as they are in intimate venues such as 'Zum goldenen Hans', where she performed together with Angelika Sheridan and Achim Tang later that day.
‘For me free improvisation is like an engine, that´s at the core of everything that I do’, Jennifer Walshe says. A statement that only really makes sense when you see how she gets involved with Sheridan and Tang, ready to be led to places and conditions that had not been spelled out before. ‘It is sort of like the source code. A lot of my pieces, they are generated out of me improvising and taking bits and then massaging and developing them. It is not just a way of making material, it is also a way of being in a community, getting to know people, playing with them – being part of a community that cares about a certain type of art.’
All quotes are from the Artist Talk with Thomas Venker as part of the 2021 Prequel issue.