I had a great time at the Cohan Collective Residency in Bournemouth last month. I was one of four composers and four choreographers on the course, which was directed by Robert Cohan and Eleanor Alberga with Kim Brandstrup and Ken Hesketh mentoring. It was super intense. I think we pretty much wrote half an hour of music in 2 weeks! Felt like being an undegrad again – good for my teaching and, in the end, for my work. Met some great people who I hope to work with again. Few pics…
Felt like a grown up presenting at the OCI Conducting Studies Conference on Saturday. Had a great time at the conference; heard some excellent papers and great to talk with some like-minded people. Looking forward to the next one in a couple of years…
I’m looking to talking about the ‘Capturing the Contemporary Conductor’ project at the Oxford Conducting Institute International Conducting Studies Conference on 23 June.
Just uploaded some recordings of the premiere of The Virus Within: Hearing HIV from February. Videos to follow in April!
Loved working with my friends Workers Union Ensemble and Dr Chad Swanson (King’s College London) on my newest piece The Virus Within: Hearing HIV. We premiered the piece on Thursday to a great crowd at Guy’s Chapel, King’s College London. Unfortunately the Southampton performance on 10 March has had to be cancelled but we will play at the University of Southampton Science and Engineering Day 2019 instead!
We asked the audience in London for five word reviews. Here are some of my favourites (!):
- “Novel, exciting and inventive, complex piece”
- “Head on crash with virus”
- “Interesting but slightly anxiety inducing!”
- “Brilliant translation: science to music. Thank you! One of the best pieces of scientific performance art I’ve ever seen/heard. Incredibly intellectually rewarding. Wonderful!”
- “Top science/music mash-up”
- “A structurally chaotic masterpiece!”
Recordings and video to come soon and, hopefully, more performances!
I’m just putting the finishing touches on the first two movements (of three) of my 30-minute new piece for Workers Union Ensemble, The Virus Within: Hearing HIV. Workers (with two new lovely babies!) are coming for a November weekend in Southampton to rehearse the piece and do some recording for the electronics that will be involved in the piece. Then I have a few months to sort out the electronics stuff and write the short final movement for the premiere on 15 February at the Chapel of Thomas Guy, King’s College London (KCL).
I’m excited about this piece. It’s been great to collaborate closely with KCL virologist Chad Swanson in developing the music and I can’t wait to see it all come together.
I’ve just finished a new piece called Captured: Three Mo-Cap Experiments for conductor and small ensemble as part of the BA/Leverhulme funded project, ‘Capturing the Contemporary Conductor’, which I’m working on with Richard Polfreman and other colleagues at the University of Southampton. The idea is to record the piece with seven musicians and three conductors (me, Geoffrey Paterson and Holly Mathieson) in 27th September in the motion-capture laboratory at the University. We will then put all the recordings and data up online for us and other researchers to explore. More to follow!!
In February the incredible Ivo Neame (piano), Jasper Høiby (bass) and Jon Scott (drums) came to play a new version of my ‘Loop Concerto’ with the HARTLEY Loop Orchestra at Turner Sims. It was brilliant to work with the trio and University of Southampton students putting the project together and big thanks must go to the Music Department at the University and Turner Sims for backing it. A video has been made and is now up on youtube. One issue is that there is very little footage of Ivo as the camera footage corrupted…
This weekend I’m directing a weekend of performances and workshops exploring musical loops at Turner Sims in Southampton. First up is a a great (free) concert on Friday lunchtime featuring Liz Kenny and Ivo Neame and a workshop on Saturday morning.
The main event is on Sunday 5 February at 7pm features leading jazz musicians Ivo Neame, Jasper Høiby and Jon Scott performing alongside University of Southampton students in the HARTLEY Loop Orchestra. We will perform a major revision/adaption of my Loop Concerto, which was premiered by Ivo and Kent County Youth Orchestra in 2013. I’ve rescored the work for jazz trio and large ensemble and am super excited to see what the trio bring to the piece. Rehearsals have been going well and they arrive on Friday. Katie Harding from Turner Sims interviewed me about the piece for the Turner Sims blog here.
Also on the programme is the world premiere of Andrew Fisher’s Piano Concertino, Mozart’s Piano Concerto in D (after J C Bach) in which Mozart loops a J C Bach Sonata, and Gavin Bryars’ 1972 seminal work Jesus’ Blood Never Failed Me Yet.
Tickets are available from the Turner Sims Box Office:
Several weeks ago I conducted the Workers Union Ensemble for a recording of a new work by Matthew Kaner, Collide, at BBC Broadcasting House. Matt is currently ‘Composer in 3’, a residency with BBC Radio 3 and Sound and Music and is writing ten new pieces to be recorded for broadcast on the station in the next ten weeks. The Workers Union Ensemble have a long, and happy, association with Matt so we were delighted when he asked us to record the first of these ten commissions.
Collide was broadcast for the first time on the Radio 3 Breakfast this week and is being played at some point during the Breakfast show every day this week. It’s available on the iPlayer and includes a short interview too: