Mika Forsling is a Danish musician and composer. Based in Copenhagen, he has previously performed in groups Lur, Faela, Nuaia, Helt Off and The Madmans Moustache. We spoke to him about We Open Our Mouth – and Listen, which will play at the Gate between 17 – 21 Dec.
Can you tell us a bit about We Open Our Mouth – and Listen?
We Open Our Mouth – and Listen is a biographical performance about growing up in a 70s Denmark full of socialism and the working class movement. It’s a reflection on what happened to the socialist heritage in a time where individualism and capitalism are more dominating than ever. With music as a weapon we make new protest songs for times to come.
What is your process when composing?
Anika and I started the project with some wild jam sessions where a lot of ideas for the compositions were born. We knew from the start that we wanted to mix the tradition of protest songs with contemporary sounds and styles, so the music contains a variety of instruments ranging from the banjo and saw to synthesizers and drum machines. During the performance the music is a mix of live music and electronic music recorded on old analog gear in my studio in Copenhagen.
How did you get into music and composing?
Music has always been present in my family and there was always a lot of instruments around in my childhood. Growing up in a small city in Sweden playing in band was the only way to escape the small-town boredom so at the age of eleven the electric guitar became one of my best friends. Some years after primary school I moved to Malmö and on to my studies at the music academy, I joined different bands and started new musical collaborations. My interest in sound led to exploring electronic music and at this time I also started to compose and perform music for contemporary circus and performance art.
What aspect are you most looking forward to when showcasing your work in London?
I’m really curious how our performance will be received by the audience. It’s always exciting to go abroad with your art, meet people and get new perspectives.
Do you have any words of wisdom for those wanting to make music?
Making music must be playful and joyful, so just start to fool around and embrace all mistakes. Music is a language so, the more you repeat things, the better you’ll get!
Why should everyone see We Open Our Mouth – and Listen?
It’s a personal, idiosyncratic performance that reaches out and touches. I believe, it gives a sense of community to existential questions that we all struggle with in solitude.
We Open Our Mouth – and Listen will be playing at the Gate Theatre between 17 – 21 Dec 2019 at 7.30pm. Book tickets here.