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Funding success for Delia Derbyshire project

Amanda Drago

24 Apr 2023

Grant funding success for new sound commissions based on Delia Derbyshire's connection to Gilsland

We have had recent funding securing ab Arts Council England's Project Grant and a Fellfoot Forward Community Grant. The funds are will helps us deliver a project called Trailblazer which explores prioneering elctronic musician and composer, Delia's Derbsyhire's relationship with Gilsland.

Delia Derbyshire was a trailblazer as a female figure in the development of electronic music in the twentieth century. Working from the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop, she is best known for her electronic realisation of Ron Grainer’s theme music to the British science fiction television series Doctor Who.

By 1973, Derbyshire, disillusioned with the BBC left London and moved to Gilsland, Northumberland to work as a radio operator for Laing's Engineering in Hallbankgate, during the laying of a gas pipeline. She then worked and lived with Li Yuan-chia at his home and art gallery at Banks, on the line of Hadrian’s Wall, 2 miles away from our base at Green Croft. Derbyshire’s creative activity during these years saw her working with visual artists, most prominently Madelon Hooykaas and Elsa Stansfield furthering her long-standing interest in the relationship between electronic music and the visual arts. On the 23rd November 2023 it will be the 60th anniversary of the first episode of Dr Who broadcast on TV.

In the lead up to and coinciding with this event we will be working with communties in West Northumberland and East Cumbria, offering music and sound workshop, creating new sound work for the landscape inspired by Dleia's methods and commissioning artists to have a creative response to the project and present new work in partners venues and within the landscape.

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