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Hold Music (Denise’s Ear) HD video; 5.1 sound; 29:30 (2021) + accompanying installation
(commissioned by Edinburgh Art Festival for Platform: 2021)


photos (c) Sally Jubb

— based on an original libretto, Hold Music (Denise’s Ear) explores the occurrences of debt in late-capitalism. Drawing on operatic form, it follows a troupe of characters that surround debt advice helpline worker Denise. As a novel infection starts to develop in Denise’s ear, callers’ enquiries are increasingly rendered as unintelligible echoes. It positions the prostrating formal quality of administrative and bureaucratic expression as an indicative symptom of a society beholden to the operation of debt.

Performed by Misa Brzezicki, Hannan Jones, Ben Ellul-Knight, Jessica Higgins, Maria Howard, Esther Draycott and Calum Sutherland.