Synth East is dedicated to celebrating the best in synthesizers and modular through hands-on interaction and live performance. You’ll be able to play with all sorts of electronic instruments, talk to the makers and manufacturers and experience artists playing music with their machines.
This is information for the March 2023 event, which was awesome. News on the 2024 event will be coming soon.
Let me introduce it to you through the medium of video:
The day is split into two events, daytime and evening:
From 11am to 5pm the Norwich Arts Centre will host manufacturers and enthusiasts from the world of synthesizers and modular. It’s an exhibition of current and classic instruments that you’ll be able to have a go on and, in some cases, even take home with you. Gear will be available to purchase. Click here for a list of Exhibitors.
Peppered through the day will be some short performances on the stage in the auditorium. This will include the Steve Davis All-Stars Modular Patch-Off, details of which are available here.
After a couple of hours’ break in order to clear the auditorium and perform some sound checks, we will embark on an evening of superb electronic music.
Kicking us off will be me, Robin “Molten Modular” Vincent, and the legendary Steve Davis in some kind of modular improvisation. That will be followed by the effervescent Finlay Shakespeare and the fabulous Nik Colk Void.
There are separate tickets for the daytime and evening. You get a discount if you buy both. More information is available here.
Synth East came about through the desire of myself and Steve to perform together. The idea of an event came up, and we thought maybe we could put something together in the back of a pub or some other space in Norwich for a bit of a gig. After talking to the Norwich Synth Club and EMOM about the challenges of finding small venues in Norwich, I thought that maybe we needed to be a bit more ambitious and turn it into more than a performance. Maybe something along the lines of SynthFest or a ModularMeets could be possible if we could find the right partners and venue.
At this point, I reached out to Electronic Sound Magazine who just happened to be based in Norwich. I’d met both Push, the editor and Mark, the Deputy Editor previously, and Push had been a guest on one of my live streams. It seemed like a great way to attract some bigger performers, and they seemed up for it. Mark immediately recommended the Norwich Arts Centre as a venue. I had assumed it was a bit out of my league, but after our first meeting with Bradley and Kelly, we knew it was a great fit.
So, quite unexpectedly, our little idea for a pub jam had morphed into a full-on event at the NAC (Norwich Arts Centre) with the backing of a proper magazine. Exciting stuff.
The thought of running a show is quite daunting, but all the feelers I’d put out had resulted in really positive and encouraging noises. Steve had an idea about doing random improvisations with a number of modular artists, so we thought that could be worth pursuing. All the manufacturers I spoke to were keen to get involved, and after asking Instagram if anyone wanted to play such an event, I was inundated with offers. At the Synthfest in Sheffield, I was able to talk to a number of people and manufacturers in person and came away very encouraged – this was going to work!
So, here we are, booking synth makers, performers and trying to work out how many people we can fit in and how to make it fun, affordable and thoroughly fabulous.