Sarah’s viola weaves its way through Karachi and London, complex teeming cities that are her inheritance. Her individual story, that of a person with joint British and Pakistani heritage and the experiences, stories, imaginings and impressions she has collected are expressed through music, dance and film. At times the worlds she inhabits meet seamlessly, at other times conflict – a dance between polarities, artists, masculine and feminine, dream and reality, light and dark, countries and cultures – a new and exhilarating energy.
She is joined by artists from Pakistan and the UK who have collaborated to create a multi-layered performance which will premiere at the Alchemy Festival on the Southbank and with a second unique performance in Bradford at Kala Sangam.
Sarhandi first set up her studio in Karachi in 2010 at the invitation of the multi award winning film director Sabiha Sumar. She has met and collaborated with local artists and musicians in Karachi since then and now considers Karachi her other home. In 2015 she received a grant from Arts Council England/British Council for a ‘collaborative composition’ in Pakistan with guitarist and composer Aamir Zaki. This collaboration was the inspiration for this production.
Sarhandi is known for her collaborative and cross disciplinary work. In 2002 she received Time Out Outstanding Collaboration for ‘Sheer’ with Russell Maliphant which was revised at The London Coliseum in 2009. Collaborators past and present include Bjork, Jean Charles de Castelbajac, Hanif Kureishi, Mark Springer, Paul Benney and Vincent Katz.
“Sarah Sarhandi makes new sounds whilst drawing on her classical training(she studied at The Royal Academy of Music). Her music is characterised by a layering of strong themes and rhythms, sounds that are both acoustic and programmed, vocals and the geometric shapes of her viola. The complexity of the composition offer a different experience each time they are heard, so that the listener explores new moods and emotions, different areas of time and space.’ Anthea Eno