The official site for the Yorkshire Festival 2016


Experience a highly personal new work by two of Yorkshire’s most celebrated artists while travelling through the landscape that inspired it.




Experience a highly personal new work by two of Yorkshire’s most celebrated artists while travelling through the landscape that inspired it.

Train journey between Goole and Hull (both directions)

Free audio download available from

16 June – 16 July 2016

**Special events announced in partnership with Northern, Sennheiser & Junction**

Listening Event, Northern train carriage, 21 June

Exhibition and sound installation, Junction, Goole, 26 July – 6 August

#sonicjourney #BEPARTOFIT

Sound UK and Yorkshire Festival are delighted to present an exciting new commission and collaboration from internationally acclaimed composer Gavin Bryars and poet Blake Morrison. Together they have created a new work inspired by, and to be experienced on, the Northern stopping train from Goole to Hull (or Hull to Goole). Listeners are invited to download the free track from to their personal device, board the train at Bryars’ birthplace Goole or Hull and embark on a uniquely personal artistic journey through the Yorkshire countryside (or indeed listen to it anywhere).


On 21 June, a special event will take place on board a Northern tran carriage, with 20 headphones, provided by global audio specialist Sennheiser, installed and playing the piece throughout the day. 


Junction, Goole's premiere arts venue, will also host a sound installation and exhibition of evocative images of the Goole to Hull route. Experience the music and poetry of Bryars and Morrison, the artists’ original manuscript and well-worn pencil, and images by talented Yorkshire-based photographer Sara Teresa.

Sonic Journey: Gavin Bryars + Blake Morrison is composed as a series of movements be played as the stopping train leaves each station on the journey between Goole and Hull or vice versa. Scored for viola, cello, bass, electric guitar and spoken voice, the work was recently recorded at National Theatre, London by Gavin Bryars and Blake Morrison together with members of the Gavin Bryars Ensemble.

For those that fancy creating and sharing their ownSonic Journey, Sound UK and Yorkshire Festival are inviting online submissions of music, or music and video, to journeys the public find personally inspiring at  Previous Your Sonic Journeys have included music to journeys in Kew Gardens in London, Bregenz in Austria, South Western Transylvania and more.   

“This journey has strong links to the area of East Yorkshire where I grew up, and this commission allows me to engage creatively with this environment for the first time. I have long admired Glenn Gould’s remarkable train journey-related The Idea of North as well as the obsessive train pieces by the Canadian Eldon Rathburn, who made the final realisation of Percy Grainger’s Train Music. This project with Blake gives me the chance to make my own train music at last.”  Gavin Bryars

“There's something especially exciting about collaborating with Gavin for a project that's happening in the area where he grew up. The landscape passengers see out the train window is very different from the one I know from my childhood, in the Yorkshire Dales, but it's rich in history and has its own kind of beauty. I'm looking forward to the challenge of doing justice to it - and to offering poems and vignettes that can be heard along with Gavin's music.”Blake Morrison 

Gavin Bryars has continually shunned convention, treading his own distinctive and unique path. Starting as a jazz bassist and pioneer of free improvisation with Derek Bailey and Tony Oxley, he worked with John Cage in the late 60s.  Early iconic pieces The Sinking of the Titanic and Jesus Blood Never Failed Me Yet achieved great popular success. Since this time Bryars has composed four operas, a large body of chamber music, several concertos and much vocal music. He has collaborated with international artists across the spectrum from Merce Cunningham and William Forsyth to Juan Munoz and Robert Wilson. The Gavin Bryars Ensemble and GB Records continue to document his work. Serene, graceful and achingly beautiful, his music is characterised by a sense of contemplation that is revealed through harmony of underlying depth.

Born in Skipton, Yorkshire, Blake Morrison is perhaps best known for his two highly acclaimed memoirs, And When Did You Last See Your Father? and Things My Mother Never Told Me. He is also a poet, novelist, journalist, librettist and critic, and has adapted several plays for Barrie Rutter’s theatre company Northern Broadsides. He teaches Creative Writing at Goldsmiths College, and lives in South London.

Sonic Journeys is a series of soundtracks to specific journeys. The series commissions artists to create new works in response to journeys that inspire them.  These works are recorded and available for free download for a limited period, enabling listeners to experience the music travelling through the landscape that inspired it. Previous commissions include Adrian Utley from Portishead (2012, a walk through ancient trees at National Trust’s Croft Castle & Parkland), Mica Levi (2011, a walk at Barbican Centre), Shackleton & Vengeance Tenfold (2011, two train journeys in Devon), Will Gregory from Goldfrapp (2009, a walk in Malvern Hills for Big Chill festival). Streamed audio, and in some cases films, of each commission will be available at

Yorkshire Festival 2016 is the UK’s newest international festival which runs from 16 June - 3 July, and promises world premieres and UK exclusives with spectacular outdoor performances as well as music, theatre, arts and dance, from theatres to clubs across the region.

Sonic Journey: Gavin Bryars + Blake Morrison is a Yorkshire Festival / Sound UK commission.  Produced by Sound UK. Funded by Arts Council England.  Supported by Northern, Sennheiser and Junction.

Listings information:
Sonic Journey: Gavin Bryars + Blake Morrison
16 June – 16 July: Free audio download available at  
21 June: Listening Event, Northern train carriage

26 July – 6 August: Sonic Journey: Gavin Bryars + Blake Morrison
Exhibition and sound installation
Featuring photography by Sara Teresa
Junction, Paradise Place, Goole, DN14 5DL
01405 763652 /

For press information, audio, images and interviews contact: Maija Handover / Sound UK, 01444 616360, [email protected]


About Sound UK: Sound UK produces and commissions extraordinary musical encounters in venues from national concert halls to village greens. Wework with the world’s most creative artists to create memorable performances that excite and move audiences across the country and beyond.  Recent projects include One and All – a voyage through sight, sound and sea, a digital artwork online at and as an exhibition at Somerset House, The Little Radio rural tour and Matthew Bourne and Michael England’s Moogmemory. Sound UKis an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation and registered charity. For more information go to or follow on Twitter @soundukarts or on Facebook soundukarts

About Yorkshire Festival:  •         Yorkshire Festival 2016 runs from June 16 - 3 July with preview events around the Tour de Yorkshire weekend at the end of April.
 •         Yorkshire Festival is backed by Welcome to Yorkshire with government funding through the Arts Council England as part of the Northern Powerhouse initiative.
 •         Yorkshire Festival will present hundreds of performances all over the county.
 •         For more information, go to or follow on Twitter @YorkshireFest or on Facebook yorkshirefestival.

Debbie Bradley, Senior Press Officer, Yorkshire Festival: [email protected], 01943 603311 / 07740 362861. Olivia Rhodes, Press Officer , Yorkshire Festival: [email protected], 01943 603311

About Northern ( Arriva Rail North Limited operates the Northern franchise and will run regional and commuter services across the region until March 2025. The operator will oversee the complete removal of the Pacers by the end of 2019, and will invest £500 million in 281 brand new air-conditioned carriages. Northern is the second largest train operator in Britain, providing 2,500 local and regional train services every day across the north of England, serving a population of nearly 15m. There are now 100million passenger journeys made on our network each year. For further information, please contact the Northern press office on 01904 56 8652.

About Sennheiser: Audio specialist Sennheiser is one of the world's leading manufacturers of headphones, microphones and wireless transmission systems. Based in Wedemark near Hanover, Germany, Sennheiser operates its own production facilities in Germany, Ireland and the USA and is active in more than 50 countries. With 19 sales subsidiaries and long-established trading partners, the company supplies innovative products and cutting-edge audio solutions that are optimally tailored to its customers' needs. Sennheiser is a family owned company that was founded in 1945 and which today has 2,700 employees around the world that share a passion for audio technology. Since 2013, Sennheiser has been managed by Daniel Sennheiser and Dr. Andreas Sennheiser, the third generation of the family to run the company. In 2014, the Sennheiser Group had sales totalling €635 million. You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at

About Junction: Goole’s multi award-winning centre for the arts opened its doors in November 2009. Junction combines three purposes – the administrative and civic base for Goole Town Council, a community centre and a busy mixed use arts facility, hosting a wide range of live events, cinema and satellite screenings, a workshop programme and activities that reach out into our community.


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