Rendezvous With The Future

Rendezvous With The Future

BBC Science Unit/Bilibili

  • TV /
  • Documentary

RTS Bristol Best Composer Winner 2023

Forthcoming 3-part science documentary series featuring the globally successful Chinese science fiction author Liu Cixin.

Each episode focuses on a central theme from Mr Liu’s many books and stories. How might the momentous First Contact with an alien civilisation happen and, if we receive a message should we reply? How will humanity transform itself into a spacefaring species and develop technology for interstellar travel so that it can begin to settle other star systems? And in the far future what are the steps humanity must take to fulfil its potential to become a technologically advanced supercivilisation?

Co-composed with Jim Cornick. Winner of RTS Bristol Best Composer Award 2023

The score is ethereal and otherworldy, both in the use of sounds and in the harmonic language, and we were given lots of scope and space to create long evolving and subtly unsettling cues.

The score makes heavy use of live vocalists which we recorded at St George's Hall in Bristol, whether as cues performed in full, samples we created and then manipulated, or avant-garde ensemble vocal improvs. These are then combined with analogue synths, plus state-of-the-art digital sample sculpting software where we've been able to create long evolving sounds out of imperfect acoustic recording, as a reference to the themes around combining human beings with artificial intelligence.

The harmony is heavily inspired by Olivier Messiaen and György Ligeti, weaving, modulating and never quite settling, to create a sense of unease but also a beauty as things align before falling apart.