Norwegian composer creates exotic sounds of books at SIBF - GulfToday

Norwegian composer creates exotic sounds of books at SIBF


Gisele Meyer fascinates the crowd with his performance.

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

The 40th edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF 2021) has opened yesterday (Wednesday) with a tonne of activity that visitors of all nationalities and age groups can happily sink their cultural teeth into. Among the various offerings on the first day was award-winning Norwegian music artist and composer Gisele Martens Meyer, who created unique musical sounds to represent books and reading.

From the centre of a spectacular audio-visual show adorned by fog effects and dramatic lighting, emerged Gisele, creating mysterious and eclectic sounds of books that left the audiences in awe as it filled the SIBF 2021 theatre.


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Simple sounds like turning the pages, touching an old book cover and taking a book from the library shelf come alive, as Meyer transformed them into a futuristic sound mix. Pre-recorded techno melodies and live improvisation with the real objects enhanced the performance, taking the audiences on an unconventional journey into the world of books.

“I am inspired by the libraries and the forgotten sounds of books,” says Meyer, talking about his performance. As today’s digital age dilutes the physical appeal of and connection with books, “reviving the lost sounds of books” becomes crucial for Meyer as an artist.


“In everyday life, we forget how books feel and sound. We forget how the different textures book covers and pages feel. Everything is being quickly replaced by the digital world. I am reviving these sounds and textures of the lost objects,” Meyer adds, highlighting that a show like his is especially important for children who came to watch him today at SIBF 2021.

Meyer began experimenting with everyday objects ten years ago, when he was commissioned to do a project with tractors – Tractor Symphony. Ever since then, he has found inspiration in concrete sounds. The Live Book Symphony performance is part of Meyer’s recorded album ‘Atrophy in the Key of Dreaming Books’.

This is his first time performing at in the Middle East. Catch Meyer at the SIBF 2021 theatre as he continues staging the Live Books Symphony on November 4, 11:30am and 7:30pm, and November 5, 5:00pm.


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