Interview: Áine Mangaoang

The Brief


Áine Mangaoang is a musicologist and Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Oslo. Her current research project is Prisons of Note, which aims to map the use, experience, and circumstance surrounding popular music in places of detention. Her publications on this subject have appeared in the journals Postcolonial Text and Torture. She is the co-author of The Dublin Music Map, and is completing her first monograph Dangerous Mediations: YouTube, Pop Music, and Power in a Philippine Prison Video with Bloomsbury Academic (forthcoming, 2018).

Which film would you recommend to our readers?
The Umbrellas of Cherbourg
, directed by Jacques Demy. A visual feast of hot pinks, greens, and yellows, with songs that make your heart soar. Plus an utterly luminous Catherine Deneuve.

Which album would you recommend to our readers?
The Langley Schools Music Project
, a Canadian album from the seventies, is a stirring record of childhood innocence that speaks to the power of pop songs and my love of community choirs.

Which architectural work would you recommend to our readers?
Harpa, designed by Henning Larsen Architects and Olafur Eliasson, is Reykjavík’s iconic concert hall, whose glass exterior reflects the changing colours of sea and sky. A shimmering symbol of Icelandic post-2008 survival.

Which stage work would you recommend to our readers?
Here Lies Love
by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim. A rose-tinted disco-opera based on the life of Philippine First Lady, Imelda Marcos, with immersive set design and clever choreography.


The following questions relate to our Perspectives column, in which two writers respond to an artwork that they are experiencing for the first time.

Can children make art?
Of course – as The Langley Schools Music Project shows.

Should art have a place in war?
No. But it already does. Every army in the world has music.

States of the Arts

The following questions relate to our States of the Arts column, for which each article includes four artworks that share an association with a single nation or territory.

Which Philippine artworks would you recommend to our readers?
, a photo essay series by Patricia Evangelista and Carlo Gabuco. Hard-hitting, heartbreakingly unbearable journalism at its absolute finest.

The Collapse of What Separates Us, a poetry collection by Manileño Vincenz Serrano. It tells us tales of cities, space, and knotty human relationships – vivid and beautiful poetry in motion.

'Lundagin Mo, Beybi!' is a very catchy song by Flying Ipis, marrying an all-girl punk ethos with sinewy garage rock and compelling power chords.

Akashaalay, an album by Low Leaf. A beat-driven homage to Pilipinas. ‘As One’ is required listening for its expert fusion of blues meets dream pop over infectious piano riffs.

The art of discovery

The following questions relate to Silent Frame’s aim to celebrate the art of discovery.

Give a work that you have recently rediscovered. How has your understanding of it changed?
Milk Man, an album by Deerhoof. I listened to it on repeat when it first came out, so listening to it now is like a time capsule to my younger, full-of-fire (if not a little wide-eyed) self.

More to discover

Áine Mangaoang: Visit Áine Mangaoang's website here. Find her page here. Read more about one of her previous projects, The Dublin Music Map, here. Her Twitter handle is @AineMaps.

Today's recommendations: The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (trailer), The Langley Schools Music Project (YouTube playlist), Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre (information), Here Lies Love (trailer), Impunity (photo essays), The Collapse of What Separates Us (excerpts), 'Lundagin Mo, Beybi!' (song), 'As One' (song), Milk Man (album).

Read more: Interviews with musicians