Impromptu (2015) is a layered sound work made up of specially commissioned recordings of renowned Freddie Mercury tribute act Gary Mullen (winner of Stars In Their Eyes, 2000) performing a score inspired by the late Queen frontman’s extensive vocal improvisation games of audience ‘call-and-response’.

Read more Hear LOW PROFILE talk about this artwork


Photo credit: Ed Smith
Photo credit: Ed Smith
Photo credit: Ed Smith
Photo credit: Ed Smith
Photo credit: Ed Smith
Photo credit: Anna Barclay


Impromptu Trailer

Who helped to make this

Impromptu was commissioned by ICIA, University of Bath. LOW PROFILE would like to thank the Theatre and Performance department at Plymouth University for their generous support in the development of this work and Plymouth College of Art for their part in supporting Hannah Roses’ artists research.

Sound Design – Neil Rose
Lighting Design – Charlotte Burton
Vocals – Gary Mullen

Where this work has ended up

Following its first presentation at ICIA, Impromptu was installed in Plymouth Athenaeum for Plymouth Art Weekender 2016.

Bonus content

Article by Mark Leahy

‘Receiving Queerly Displaced Utterance: Failure and / as Response in Works by Glenn Ligon and LOW PROFILE’ (2018)

Read the full text

LP talk about Impromptu

Listen to LOW PROFILE discuss Impromptu


Impromptu explores the potential of simple but evocative collective experiences and actions. We are interested in the shifting scale of these moments – from important acts of protest, to the simple creation of an in-sync hand clap.

Focusing on crowd and fan behaviour at rock concerts, we closely studied Mercury’s documented live stadium performances and his involvement of the crowd in ‘impromptu sing alongs’. In these situations, fans are invited and encouraged to be part of (and to create) something bigger than themselves, by joining together in the simple act of making sound.

During the 1985 broadcast of the charity concert Live Aid, Freddie’s call to his audience, reached a global audience of 1.9 billion, across 150 nations. The seemingly simple gesture of inviting an audience to echo his voice, could be seen in this moment, as a powerful call to arms.

LOW PROFILE aim to not only create a homage to an iconic, virtuosic performer, but also to draw on a cultural memory of these performances and the audience’s own experiences of attending and being part of similar events – where the feeling of being part of something live, alongside and with others, matters.