Kaki King has incorporated light images with the sound of her guitar for her new show “The Neck is the Bridge to the Body.” In an interview with OutWords, she said she was inspired by the projection images on tall buildings. “It’s a good idea, isn’t it? So I think it just came from the good idea store,” she said.
But King took the idea to a new level in her show where live projected images are controlled by the live notes she plays on her guitar and the volume. In the final product, images linked to the guitar notes are projected onto a large portable white screen and her white guitar. King will wear a white outfit for performances but said she won’t disappear behind the images. “You’ll still be able to see me,” she said. Adding stage lighting to the mix ensures she remains visible to the audience. It’s a new experience for King. “It’s like the computer’s listening to me play,” she said. When she plays loudly the images become brilliant and as the volume drops, the images fade, allowing King to control the intensity of the images throughout the show.
The process has been time consuming. The light designers at Glowing Pictures, the company that King chose for the project, invented a separate image for each note King plays on the guitar. This ensures that every time a particular note is played the same image is projected. The popular composer and musician will begin touring the show in late 2014 and continue through 2015. The soundtrack album will also be available by then. King financed the development of the new show, The Neck is a Bridge to the Body, through the crowdfunding site Kickstarter. She explained why she chose this avenue of financing: “It’s such a great, great platform. For me it represents a fair marketplace…. It’s just so much better to put the financing in the hands of the people who are going to appreciate your show the most.” The fundraising campaign was a huge success and King said every penny over her original goal went straight back into developing the show. “Every single penny.”
King will be performing at the Calgary Folk Festival July 24-27, 2014, but, she said, because that appearance was booked before she developed The Neck is a Bridge to the Body, she’ll be performing some of her other work. Visit www.kakiking.com to learn more.
–Anne Cote is a Winnipeg-based freelance writer.