Field Recording, Sound Documentary, Acoustics, Echo, Ressonance, Cape Town

field recordingoriental plaza


Direction: James Webb
Camera: Norman Servais
Sound recording: James Webb & Vanessa De Michelis
Video editing: Matthew Kalil
Sound editing: James Webb
Thanks to: Sheikh Mogamat Moerat, Carine Zaayman

A 2-minute intervention inside Cape Town’s disused Oriental Plaza, an Apartheid-era shopping mall designed to control Indian trade. On the 4th day of Ramadan, 2008, Sheikh Mogamat Moerat of District Six’s Zeenatul Islam Majid mosque was invited to sing the Adhan (call to prayer) inside the empty remains of the building a few weeks prior to its demolition to make way for luxury apartments.

This is a work (see original) by the south african sound artist James Webb. I participated at the recording and intervention and I will explain why this work is so important for me: this was my first contact with this type of sonic art that at the same time offers a musical experience, a political intervention, a site specific work and an acoustic phenomenon of great beauty.

Cape Town, South Africa - 2008.