Wakeful: new film project

by Anne Robinson in London, Greater London, England

Wakeful: new film project
We did it
On 16th August 2017 we successfully raised £1,020 with 22 supporters in 42 days

I am raising funds to complete my new experimental film and sound work: 'Wakeful' which has completed R&D and has confirmed venues.

by Anne Robinson in London, Greater London, England

Wakefulis a new, experimental film work with immersive sound, constructed experimentally through research and  international collaboration with sound artists: reflecting on memory, pacifism, war, trauma, loss, voice and inter-generational memory. It will be edited in two different versions: a single screen film with recorded soundtrack including music, for screening in cinema, gallery or community settings or online and a longer, expanded version, across three screens, which may either be installed with recorded sound or performed in a 'gig' context with live score.

Research and Development for the work is complete after an intense period of library, technical and conceptual investigation, the project is underway with a recce in Estonia, crew and performers confirmed and much interest in showing the work.  We have also had support from Middlesex University. I will be collaborating with amazing musicians and sound artists from Estonia, Russia, Germany and the UK on the score to make this work and have already confirmed:  German experimental percussionist, Limpe Fuchs, Russian folk/ hip hop artists Oligarkh, UK sound collective Breathing Space and Estonian singers from sound art group MOKs - as well as a great crew. 

Wakeful concerns a ‘hidden history’: a few days after the declaration of 'peace' at the November 11th Armistice in 1918, a small squadron of British ships were dispatched from Rosyth on the east coast of Scotland on what was later called the ‘Red Trek’ or ‘Baltic Cruise’ heading for the Gulf of Finland: an ‘undeclared’ war on Bolshevism.  On ‘Red’ Clydeside in 1917, at John Brown’s yard where Wakeful  was built, the workers were on strike. In two archived sailors’ journals in the RMG and IWM libraries and in cabinet war diaries at the PRO, I found accounts of Wakeful’s voyage  through mine-infested waters, a handwritten programme for a concert on board Wakeful, the story of the capture and repatriation of Soviet ‘Admiral’ Raskolnikov (a leading Bolshevik) , and photographs of my father as a young man. 

By December 1918, Wakeful was moored at Tallinn. One of the other ships in the convoy Cassandra had hit a mine and sunk some days earlier. The sailors were cold, tired, hungry and frightened, but on Christmas Day in Tallinn harbour, there was a concert on board Wakeful. In the freezing cold and threatened with  bombardment, the ship’s crew played and sang. My father was there and in the programme, I found a particular tune that he sang to me decades later. He was silent about war, apart from the strange, fragmented memory of ‘Russian sailors in the ice’ but sang often. I hear that tune now.  

The following day, two Soviet battleships sent by Trotsky to investigate the British presence, were captured, Raskolnikov taken prisoner and brought to London, whilst 40 young men of his crew were taken to Naissaar Island 20 miles off the coast and shot without trial. Within days, Wakeful was shelling the coast at Kunda Bay and one historian draws on a contemporary account of ‘human debris in the snow’…perhaps my father’s ‘Russian sailors in the ice’. One hundred years on, the arms trade brings in cash and scatters human debris and the seas are still in conflict, carrying refugees through contested waters, as borders move and move again. 

Wakeful uses song and experimental film as a conduit - to listen to the past and understand the present.

See more at the project website: https://wakefulproject.org

Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£20 or more

£20 Reward

A 'Thank you' credit at the end of the single screen film and in any publication produced along work exhibition or screening of the work (unless donor opts to remain anonymous).

£50 or more

£50 Reward

A 'Thank you' credit at the end of the single screen film and in any publication produced along work exhibition or screening of the work (unless donor opts to remain anonymous) plus a free copy of the small publication which will be part of the first exhibition of the work, signed by the artist.

£100 or more

£100 Reward

A 'Thank you' credit at the end of the single screen film and in any publication produced along work exhibition or screening of the work (unless donor opts to remain anonymous) plus a free copy of the small publication which will be part of the first exhibition of the work, signed by the artist and a CD of the completed soundtrack for the single screen film.

£150 or more

£150 Reward

A 'Thank you' credit at the end of the single screen film and in any publication produced along work exhibition or screening of the work (unless donor opts to remain anonymous) plus a free copy of the small publication which will be part of the first exhibition of the work, signed by the artist and a DVD of the completed single screen work: 'Wakeful'.


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