Been looking at lots of recent vocal based work for my teaching at University of Southampton. Came across this piece by Caroline Shaw, Narrow Sea. It’s really fantastic; moving, beautiful and odd. Brilliant performances by Dawn Upshaw and co too. I’m officially inspired to make a song cycle…
I’ve been working on a new piece for sax quartet and electronics, which features the PICO Wavetable Oscillator synth Blake Troise made for me back in 2020. The piece is called Avalanche. More on this soon! Excited to try out a new synth Blake has recently made for me too!
Earlier this year I was involved in a fantastic collaborative exhibition by Phantom Limb and Noise in Yangon – ‘A Sound Journey to Freedom’. I worked with the fantastic artist Moe Myat May Zarchi (aka P.O.E.M) on a new film Moon Landing (Version 2.0 Longgyi, which features archive sound, recordings that Moe had made at protests in Myanmar and music. The film was exhibited at God’s House Tower in Southampton earlier this year, and you can watch it below and find out more about the project and other artists here.
Was great to receive in the post a beautiful new publication from Sam Belinfante, ‘On the Circulation of Blood’, which documents his Folkestone Triennial project. My score for Beacons is included, as are scores by a group of amazing composers including Neil Luck, Josephine Stephenson, Elaine Mitchener, Sarah Dacey and Bernhard Schimpelsberger. Studio recordings of the scores have been released bandcamp too.
The ‘Beacons’ score
You can find out more and buy the Extended Score and Album here:
I’ve just come back from a big summer break with the family, had an awesome time (pic of a lovely Italian vineyard below!). Just before I went away I finished my 3-year stint as Head of Music at the University of Southampton, handing over to my colleague Prof. Tom Irvine. It’s been quite a ride managing things through the pandemic and with other challenges. Really glad I did it but also pleased to return to having more space for creative projects. Lots on the way so watch this space!
Some photos by Brandon Otto from the London Sinfonietta’s Untold Stories at The Stage Door the other week…
On 22 July 2022 London Sinfonietta are staging an event in Southampton, UNTOLD STORIES, to screen the premiere of ANIL SOOD. I collaborated with the amazing artist Alys Scott-Hawkins on this project, writing a piece for piano and electronics, A-Listers, that Clíodna Shanahan recorded back in July 2021. Alys used the recording of this piece to make a super cool film. The music and film explore the life of Anil Sood, who we both met when he ran our local DIY store. Anil is an amazing person, who ran (and runs) drum’n’bass events as PARADOX. Following this premiere the film will be available on Youtube.
Clíodna Shanahan will also perform the UK premiere of my Too Many Sweets (when Dorothy met Blake) for toy pianos and electronics. The rest of the programme features a great piece by Julia Wolfe, East Broadway, and Steve Reich’s seminal Electric Counterpoint.
Back in March I played piano with the Dan Mar-Molinero orchestra on a strange gig bringing together AI and jazz. I’ve had a bit of a strange relationship with the piano over the years. I love playing jazz music in particular but also spent a lot of my 20s around serious players and lost confidence about my playing. Piano has remained central to my compositional practice though. More recently my mate Dan Mar-Molinero keeps asking me to do gigs like this one at Turner Sims. Playing with Jasper Hoiby and Julian Arguelles as well as many other great musicians in this project was fantastic. I like it. I want to do more. Here are some great photos from Ash from whatabouttheash.