Introduced species

Academic, composer, conductor and an orchestra come together to explore the crisis of the trash vortex in our oceans through sound.

How does music respond to art that responds to our environment? This one-hour special event co-presented with Vivid Sydney and the Seymour Centre explores the crisis of the trash vortex in our oceans through sound, image and the devastating cuteness of rubber ducks.

In 1992, nearly 29,000 rubber duck toys fell from a ship travelling from Hong Kong to the USA. After floating in their epic ocean bathtub, the first duck beached 1500km away in Alaska with ducks gradually washing up everywhere from Russia to Hawaii, shedding light on ocean currents, wind patterns and teaching us a lot about plastic pollution.

This event was held at the University of Sydney on Thursday 31 May 2018. There is no podcast for this event.


Challenged by the University of Sydney’s own Ruth Barcan (Department of Gender & Cultural Studies), composer Katy Abbott with conductor Iain Grandage and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra will deconstruct then reconstruct the composition, concluding with the performance of 20 minute work with accompanying projected visuals.

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