10,000 HORSES is the house band in the bar at the end of the world. Velvet (ukulele, voice and electronics) and Lady Nite (synthesizers) are sisters. In dreams, they were visited by the spirit of Khutulun, Kubla Khans niece. This Mongol warrior princess had vowed to marry the man who could beat her in a wrestling match, his defeat awarding her a bounty of horses. Unbeaten to the end, she amassed 10,000 horses. Her legacy has been poorly understood. Today, the Mongolian national wrestling costume includes a bolero vest that exposes the chest, thus preventing women from participating. The opera Turandot, borrowing greatly from the story of Khutulun, casts her as a murderous shrew. Inspired by the true story of this fierce feminist icon, 10,000 Horses is committed to shining sonic light on the underestimated triumphs of our female heroines, celebrating in song the rocky emotional terrain that is often assigned to the feminine condition. In 2015, the duo presented re-imagined soundtracks for three seminal Joyce Weiland films. Later that year, they launched their debut album, Le Grand Silence.
Alexis O’Hara (Velvet Nite) is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice exploits allegories of the human voice via sound performance and installation. Her installation SQUEEEEQUE – The Improbable Igloo toured extensively across Western Europe and was the first acquisition of Basels Haus für Elektronische Kunst’s media art collection. As a musician, she has shared the stage with artists such as Diamanda Galàs, Ursula Rucker, Henri Chopin and TV on the Radio. Alexis and her alter ego, Guizo LaNuit, are mainstays of the Montreal cabaret scene.
Stephen Lawson (Lady Nite) has created and toured live art works across Canada, the Americas and Europe. Co-founder of the performance group PRIMUS (1989 -2000), then one half of the collaborative art duo 2boys.tv (2001 – to present) Stephen’s art works cut across artistic disciplines, fluently incorporating sound, action, video, spectator participation and the dynamic use of space. His work within the sphere of music has included directing large-scale concerts for the likes of The Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and R. Murray Schafer, studying cross-cultural approaches to voice training and creating vocal scores for collective creations.