To download the commission brief, click on the link opposite


Sonic Commission:

We are looking for someone to collaborate with Mike Blow and Alison Ballard to create a new sonic artwork to inhabit their installation, 'Pod'.

What is 'Pod':

'Pod' is an installation that emits sound from within 2-metre inflatable spheres. It acts as a mediator between the audible, the visual and the corporeal by translating sound into a tactile, visual object. With its own physical presence, sound can be experienced in new ways, allowing it to be simultaneously seen, heard and felt. Through physical interaction with the work (touching, hugging, etc), audiences hear sound emanating from inside as well as feeling it resonate upon the surface of the spheres.

View 'Pod' at the Whitley Arts Festival 2013 here:

There will be an opportunity to experience the work in its current form and meet the artists at the Oxford Christmas Light Festival on the 21st and 22nd November 2014. Click here for more information about the event. There will be a Q&A session with the artists during this time (times TBC). Places will be limited and so if you would like to attend, please email:

The Commission:

This new commission is for a sonic work to inhabit up to 8 pods and should take Mike Blow and Alison Ballard's original work as a point of departure to be subsumed, expanded or subverted.

The visually arresting and aurally entrancing work will be easily engaged by broad audiences and offers a fresh approach and access to contemporary music. The audience will be able to move around and between the work during the performance / installation and will be able to touch the surface of each sphere.

The completed work will tour a number of venues and festival throughout the Summer of 2015 including 'Constellation'; a multi-disciplinary art trail throughout Reading Town Centre and an interactive sound art exhibition at South Hill Park, Bracknell (Dates TBC). Further performances may be realised at a later date.

Technical considerations:

The following aspects should be taken into consideration in your proposal:

- Sound will be emitted from speakers housed within the Pods; each one a 2-meter diameter, blue, PVC, air-filled sphere.
- The work will be performed / exhibited in both indoor and outdoor locations.
- It must be possible to configure the work in a number of ways, ranging from between 2 - 8 pods at any one time. This will allow the work to be installed and performed at a range of venues and situations.

Technical support will be provided by the artists, Mike Blow and Alison Ballard. Together, you will mutually explore the best way to configure the work for presentation.

Fees and Conditions:

A commission fee of up to £1,500 is available.

The successful composer will be required to work closely with the original artists to develop the physical manifestation of the work on a number of dates between January - December 2015. We anticipate that this will include a minimum of 2 days in Plymouth, and between 1-3 days in Reading (dates TBC). Modest travel and accommodation costs will be covered.

How to Apply:

Please email your application as a single PDF document, including:
- Name
- Contact Details (postal address, telephone number, email address).
- A short expression of interest outlining your proposed idea for the piece, how you imagine it's physical arrangement and how it will draw upon the original installation.
- A brief budget.
- Up to 5 links to relevant previous works.
- CV (max 2 pages).
Please send your application to with 'Sonic Commission' in the title.

The deadline for submissions is 12:00, 28th November 2014.

The successful composer will be notified by the January 10th 2015. If you have not heard from us by this date, please assume that your application has been unsuccessful. We look forward to receiving your submissions.


For opportunities to work with artists, help run workshops, help run events and generally contribute to a fantastic festival, have a look at the Volunteer posts available in the download on the right, or alternatively contact us

The Whitley Arts Festival is looking for a Reading resident to take up a flexible 1 day per week volunteer post as a project manager and administrator. The post would provide valuable arts management experience as well as the opportunity to meet and work alongside some of the leading international artists of the day. Being a part of the team would help us to deliver this fantastic festival in Reading. please contact us if you are interested.

The Whitley Arts Festival has been working with Rreading University on a number of projects and currently is engaging Fine Art and English student Niquelle La Touche who will be co-curating the Takeaway Gallery with us.

Also we are delighted to be working with Laura Bushell, who kindly designed this flyer for us. For enquiries about her design work contact her here