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Fire House Detroit

a sound installation in five parts.

My thanks to all.

To all of the talented individuals that helped me grow what started out as a “simple” idea into a complex and successful fruition, I thank you so Much!

My appreciation to you and the feelings I have, are immeasurable…

 As for the others, who were distracted by the large camera production, massive lights, and Honor Guards salutation of gun fire honoring Detroit’s Children.. I would ask that you to please look at the big picture, and consider the smiles on the faces of the Children from the Detroit Children’s Choir. These kids grew immensely from this experience. As their director Carol Schoch, and many of their parents have told me personally.

 I have copied some of the emails tht I have been receiving over the course of the last few days.

Thanks Again!

Gregory Holm


Gregory and Jeffrey,

I want both of you to know what a heartfelt experience Friday evening was for Zoe as a participant, and for me as a member of the audience .  I realized early on in the process how important this project had become to Zoe, she expressed on several occasions that she really loved the new material.  For most of the children this experience will be an opportunity to venture away from a self imposed definiton of what they think they should be doing musically, or what others expect them to do musically, and for that very special gift I thank you. There was nothing distracting about the evening, if you could hear you experienced something beautiful.



Guys, I’m still running full speed since an unbelievable time in Detroit—so this will be brief.  

 I can’t shake the thought of the emotional dimension that pure hard work on an incredibly unique project brings out. Every laugh had, tear shed, muscle flexed, conversation spoken, talent wrought—I can’t help but be eternally grateful to have been part of this experience and have the opportunity to peer into the great beyond of what a group of people and their collective effort+talents can bring. 


I’ve been waiting to find the best time and place to cry and unleash the deep feelings I have for the entirety of the firehouse project. It’s happening now as I’m walking into the conde nast building to shoot. 

 To everyone. From the bottom of my heart. Endless love. 






 Hi Greg and Jeff -

I am still reflecting on the Firehouse experience and marveling at what was accomplished and how it all turned out.  Thank you for inviting DCC to participate in your vision.  The children grew is big ways during the whole process and especially during the performance itself.  They really understand the word ‘professional’ as it relates to performance mode - focus, comportment, self control, expression, communicating through the music, feeling the music,…. I could go on, of course, but I know you get it.  So, from my perspective, the outcome was fabulous!  






I will say the compositions were beautiful so hats off to the composers for that, they did an amazing job. My personal opinion is that the event was a huge success.  The audience was very appreciative and just sat there with smiles on their face after the show to take in what they had heard and seen.  The sound sounded great, the performers were spot on and the kids were awe inspiring.


Only meeting you 3 weeks ago I at first thought i might be crazy for flying down to help out.  Yes more time would have been great but I must say.  This was one of the best decisions of my life.  Performing a selfless act for Detriot and its people with a group of creatives, and working with you has opened my eyes again to what I am supposed to be doing with my life and how my creative gifts can empower my community to push for great things and beautiful things.


From the kids involvement and the smiles on their faces to their teachers it was obvious they had an amazing time and that alone should make all this other negativity go away.  Its ridiculous that anybody would question the power of this project and its huge success.  We all have creative opinions but at the end of the day I think ever person in the audience was able to identify with so much variety of beautiful music, theater and performance.

 I think i can speak for Kim and I on this one, we love you very much for the inspiration you have given and the gift that we saw that night.

Forever grateful,


Hi Greg, 

 Thank you for sharing this and soliciting our feedback. I will just briefly give my two cents. 

 I had a total blast and feel really fortunate to have had the opportunity to be a part of something unique and creative with a spotlight on Detroit, a place I have come to adore, and to work with many wonderful, talented people. 


From our other projects together, I felt that I was prepared for what I imagined would be a fluctuating, almost experimental production with lots of uncharted territory and unexpected shifts.


Another aspect that I think frames my experience is knowing that I was only one teeny part of a much larger production. The fact that I did not know all the goings on was not much an issue for me at the time. My focus was fulfilling my specific role. 


That many things were a pleasant surprise (the extensive nature of the filming, the involvement of the firemen, staging, etc.), I believe, is a function of my overall enthusiasm for the project and delight that someone is taking the initiative to highlight Detroit, its history and the creative and dedicated people therein in a unique and interesting way. I can see that there would be some distress in certain things being a surprise for those who had a larger creative stake in the project. 


In hindsight, I do think that it would have been helpful if we were all on the same page with regard to the symbolism, philosophy and context/timeline of the performance both overall and the little nuggets. The spire for example. That’s really cool! I had no idea. I think that knowledge would have helped inform Thollem’s piece for sure. 


I know you have shed a lot of blood, sweat and tears to make this something really special and positive for our community. I thank you so much for your hard work and I hope that the various challenges have not tainted this experience overall. I hope very much to work together in the future and I’m always down for whatever. 




Hi Greg,

 I found the entire experience rewarding on so many levels.  I know you devoted your entire soul into the project, and your selfless actions reminded me of this every day. As for the live performance.  From what I saw behind camera were children enthralled in the moment and singing and dancing with passion.  I saw the crowd engaged, truly enjoying themselves, and transfixed:  The proof is in the footage.



Hello Greg,

  I learnt through this project that people who undertake strictly technical or physical jobs are usually not interested in art projects of any kind, and they need to be paid unless there is a very specific cause (as this was the case though). I stated several times that I couldn’t understand people’s lack of interest on 9/11 10th anniversary and their blatant intention to cash in. But I would also say that a room full of artists working almost for free is the perfect environment for this kind of ‘grievances’ and it was inevitable that somebody came up with them, so I wouldn’t worry too much about it. 

I will come forward if you ask me so to defend the integrity of your/our project. 




Greg and Jeff, it was a pleasure working with you and I appreciate

everything that you guys have brought to Detroit. Certainly hope that

we will collaborate again in the future. Kathy, you were wonderful and I thank you again for your attention to detail. Hope to see all of you soon and congrats on a great start to this project!



Hi Gregory—

Congrats on a great project. I look forward to seeing/hearing about the final video product this fall.



Hi Greg,

I hope you’ve recovered from this.  I just wanted to say thanks for including me in the Fire House project.  I had an amazing time working with everyone, and it is something I’ll be talking about for a long time.  At a party on Saturday a couple people recognized me from the concert, and had many compliments about the performance.  Looking forward to seeing the film and photograph!



 Hi Greg,

I’m sure you’re asking yourself “WTF?” right about now…

In any case, it was an absolute pleasure lighting it up for you and meeting everyone. It sure looked like you were getting something you can cut. Noise Reduction might be an issue that only an experienced post house can deal with for some of the shots.

Again, thanks a ton for having me be a part in your community event.



Oh my goodness!  What a sight to behold.  You really do things up, this old chick sure has a lot to learn from you - memorable.
















The Fire House Project is Hot in the Press

Check out this article by the online inspiration publication Lost At E Minor!

Check it out! staff has written an article about the Fire House Detroit Project. The article features demo videos of the Pyrophone and Haptic Resonance.

Have a look!:

The First Dress Rehearsal

     Last night marked the first full dress rehearsal for the Firehouse performance. Everyone was glowing because they knew that something truly special was coming together. People have begun to arrive from both coasts to work with our crew of talented local technicians, hear the voices of our children, and see our beautiful city.

     We look forward to sharing this experience with everyone on Friday night and we hope to see you all there!

Three Days Away

Our crew is working hard to put on a spectacular performance!  We’re three days away and the Pyrophone Fire-Powered Organ sounds eerily amazing.  Other specifically designed instruments are being assembled.  The fire marshall has given us the go-ahead, and the Co-director, Ramon J. Goni, has arrived.  The Director of Photography, Sasha Burdett, has arrived.  Our Light Designer, Richard Sands, is flying in today.  The rehearsals with the musicians and Detroit Children’s Choir have given us a sneaky peak of just how incredible this is going to be.

Live Musical Event on July 22nd

Image © 2011 Catrina Dulay

Press Release

We represent an artist’s group called 2:1. We are the artists responsible for last year’s Ice
House Detroit; an architectural installation that provided a beacon of dialogue regarding
the housing crises. We are currently working on a project called Firehouse Detroit. This
is the second in an ongoing series of Detroit specific projects and is staged as an homage
and tribute to Detroit’s citizens, its firefighters, and its talented young people.
The Firehouse Detroit Project is spread over several dates and includes five exciting
events. On July 22nd we are staging a live, filmed performance at one of Detroit’s
beautiful and historic de-commissioned fire houses. This performance will feature the
Detroit Children’s Choir under the direction of Carol Schoch, members of the Street
Poets Society under the direction of Peace Project founder, Al Taylor, the Detroit Fire
Department’s Honor Guard, and some of Detroit’s finest composers and musicians.
On August 6th, we are hosting an Arise Detroit Neighborhood’s Day event that will be
held on the grounds of the firehouse. The event will feature sound art installations and a
special musical instrument building seminar in which 100 children will take home the
musical instruments they have made.
Then, on the weekend of September 11th which marks the 10th anniversary of the events
of 9/11, we will hold two simultaneous events. A commemorative film that is produced
from the July 22nd performance will be shown at the Detroit Institute of Arts Film
Theater with live performances by  the Detroit Fire Department Honor Guard and The
Detroit Children’s Choir. Meanwhile, our historic firehouse will be converted into a
temporary museum that will showcase over 100 years of firefighter memorabilia.
Finally, on 11.11.11, we will stage a related performance at the grand reopening event
for Cranbrook Museum.
We’re very excited to be partnering with a number of organizations and community
groups here in Detroit to create projects that showcase the talents of Detroiters and foster
the development of creativity and community awareness in Detroit’s children.

Thank you,
Firehouse Detroit Project
Gregory Holm
Jeffrey Williams

The Mayor’s Endorsement

McCann-Erickson is Designing our Website

McCann-Erickson is generously donating their time to design 2:1 a website!  They are the world’s largest advertising agency network, and are responsible for campaigns for Mastercard and Xbox.  Look out for a sleeker design in the future!  Thanks McCann-Erickson!

Read a review of a performance of “InGrain,” choreographed by Biba Bell, and “Four Corners,” by Jeffrey Williams here

Fire House Detroit is a continuation of the dialogue that began with the symbolic Ice House Detroit, which focused an international lens on the city’s neglected neighborhoods and the national housing crisis. This year’s installation will become a nexus for partnerships with cultural institutions, neighborhood advocacy groups, and the talented young people of Detroit.

Through the repurposing of a historic Fire House, Engine Company #4 will become the location for staging a live event where by contemporary artists andcomposers will engage with Detroit’s inner city youth in a truly collaborative way. As a point of engagement, we have received submissions from the Street Poets Society on broad themes: their perceptions of Detroit, their individual aspirations, and their hopes for the future of the city in which they live. Furthermore, these writings have been transposed into lyrical content for modern compositions, which will be performed by the Detroit Children’s Choir.

In addition to this collaboration 2:1 will be transforming the façade of this historic structure into a resonant musical instrument. This “pyrophone” is similar to a pipe organ that uses a single, small, precisely controlled flame, that when projected into glass tubes produces a beautiful, sustained tone. The temperature difference between the flame and the glass tube causes the air to oscillate, which is perceived as sound.

An exciting week ahead.

This coming week we will be continuing the Sat rehearsals of the Detroit Children’s Choir, resonant Yoga on Sundays, and we will also be presenting two very interesting events.

A unique dance performance and then two days later a unique design discourse titled “PROVOCATIONS: Challenging Detroit’s Architectural Discourse”.

both are not to be missed!

On Sunday June 26th We will be presenting an interesting dance performance choreographed by Biba Bell of MGM. Without giving away too many details I can only say that the audience will be directed to appreciate the sound of dance.

On Sunday June 26th We will be presenting an interesting dance performance choreographed by Biba Bell of MGM. Without giving away too many details I can only say that the audience will be directed to appreciate the sound of dance.

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