With one night to go before RTR.FM’s A Moment In Time. Pelican spoke to RTR Operations, Events and Volunteer Manager Chris Wheeldon about what to expect at the unique event.
On Friday we’ll see A Moment in Time: a celebration of Perth music and a farewell to the WA Museum for the next 4 years. With presale tickets sold out, what do you think it is about the Museum that resonates with folks so much?
I think the Museum is one of those places that makes people remember their childhood and visiting on school trips. I know I always think of Bluey, the full skeleton of a blue whale that use to be housed in the older section of the Museum. That hasn’t been there for a good 10 years but that is what I always think about. Museums are not the coolest of places to visit anymore – people prefer small bars or destination spots when they visit a city but really Museums are the best place to understand what a city holds dear. The WA Museum does that really well for Perth and the Maritime Museum does it fantastically for Fremantle.
Blue whale on the 5th floor of the Francis Street building, 1980s. Image courtesy WA Museum
Poor Bluey

The five singers are all from pretty different parts of the music scene, how did they all end up playing together with the WA Symphony Orchestra?

They were five that we really respect at the station and when the idea became a reality, they were the obvious ones to get the most out of some of the songs we had in mind. Who better to sing some songs than five completely different performers?

They’ll be playing a pretty broad selection of Perth music, what was the criteria for choosing the songs?

There was no real criteria to it. We came up with a whole heap of songs that we automatically thought about when thinking of WA songs. RTRFM presenters Dr Adam Trainer and Ross Chisholm came up with some real oldies and songs that people may not have thought of. In the end though it came down to what the singers felt comfortable doing and what they saw as an iconic WA song. For example, Mei Saraswati will be singing a song by Mile End, a band some people will not know, but a band that mean a whole lot to her.
Mei Saraswati

Do you think we’ll be seeing more collaborations between RTR and the WA Symphony Orchestra in future?

We are hoping so. It’s a no-brainer really.

So what’s a Trautonium?

A Trautonim is a very old synthesiser, one of the first. This one however is hand built by Meg Travers. She will be the first person to ever play one in Western Australia, and the first woman to play one ever. It is something pretty special. Google it, the videos are amazing.
The “Gallery of Glorious Sound” is one of the more mysterious elements of the night, what could we expect to find in there?
Dr Adam Trainer and the team from Artifactory have put together a collection of weird and wonderful musical instrument from all over the globe. Some are hand built, some are bought on the back streets and hawkers markets from foreign lands. They will also have a impromptu jam with some of them on the night.

What other events will RTR be running this year?

The next big one is Fremantle Winter Music Festival in June. In August our most important event Radiothon which will include a multi venue Party in Northbridge. Beyond that it is a secret, but we’ve got a few tricks up our sleeve.
Caught your interest? You can find out more here
Words by Hayden Dalziel

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