Squonk Opera will bring “Pneumatica,” a free show that uses air flow to produce music and art, to the SUNY Oswego campus Oct. 4 and 5.

Performances will run around 30 minutes and begin at 1, 3 and 6 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 4, and noon and 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 5, on the Marano Campus Center lawn.

“Pneumatica” is an event inspired and powered by air. Squonk Opera pumps up the volume of the show by adding live and original music to their show. The show features electronic bagpipes, visual puns, wild guitar and bass riffs, boisterous music and surreal images.

Figures and tentacles grow, powered by blowers and vortex fans, and culminate in the 40-foot high Lady Pneumatica who incorporates a wind turbine on her head. She blossoms with sails, breathing steam and raising her inflated arms to the sky. 

Squonk’s music incorporates the swoops and eddies of air with electronic bagpipes and a vertical accordion that is Lady Pneumatica’s lungs, played like a piano while it rises and falls with her breath. Playing with visual puns, air activates costumes. Squonkers inflate like blowfish and musically activate headtubes with wild guitar and bass riffs.

“The show is staged like a concert,” said Miranda Traudt, director of arts programming at SUNY Oswego. “And it is similar to something you might see at an outdoor festival. The performance is very unique. It will be a different type of experience compared to more traditional Artswego events.” 

The performance includes homemade instruments, eye-catching costumes and inflatables all powered by air. Traudt described the show as a theatrical, scientific concert inspired by the use of air.

At the end of the performance, the artists talk about how they made everything for the show with behind-the-scenes video footage. They walk the audience through how they constructed the various instruments and costumes and how they use technology and engineering techniques to make the show come together.

Squonk Opera, based out of Pittsburgh, has performed on three different continents and in over 30 states throughout the United States. Squonk Opera typically performs at festivals or big city venues. This is going to be the third time they have performed at SUNY Oswego in the past 12 years.

“They love performing in Oswego and are very familiar with our students, staff and campus,” Traudt said.

The performance dovetails with the college’s Homecoming on Oct. 4 and 5. For more information on that weekend celebration, visit alumni.oswego.edu/homecoming.

For more information on arts events at SUNY Oswego, visit the college's arts calendar.