Wailing Bodies 2017

Choir group

00:07:00 minutes

Performance Art

Areej Kaoud

Image courtesy to the artist


I recently learnt the correct English verb used to describe an ambulance, a police car or any alarm sounding is ‘to wail’. English being my third language, the verb ‘wail’ has instant human qualities to me, to also use it to describe a machine became intriguing. During my residency at ISCP I decided to create a performance where the human voice and body wails machine generated emergency sounds. Having recorded police cars, ambulances and fire trucks wailing constantly in New York city, I decided to take voice coaching classes in order to scale my voice, evaluate where its strength lies and train with a group of performers to wail together.


Wailing is presented here as an exercise attempting to ease a state of anxiety, increase personal and psychological provisions’ durability through vocal play.


This performance artwork took place during my residency at ISCP in New York sponsored by Maraya Art Center.



Copyright © Areej Kaoud 2023