It's been a productive first quarter of 2015 in our Collaborative Composition 2014 project - with one new composition premièring each month as a result of last year's project. In its second year the support of Nordic Culture Point allowed us to work in collaboration with SICC productions to invite young Nordic and British composers to develop new choral and contemporary classical works with professional ensembles through series of production-based residencies. Supported by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union the project has now been developed to our new Moving Classics - European Network for New Music programme taking place throughout 2016. To listen to the full performances click the photos below.
January, 7 2015 - ‘it means what you think it means’ by Halldór Smárason (Iceland)
Premièred by Psappha Ensamble at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation, Manchester - ‘it means what you think it means’ is written for piano trio and video. Halldór explained: “During my residency in Manchester in the fall 2014, I spent the time researching and working on a new piece at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation. After going through an excessive amount of Burgess’ personal belongings, including handwritten poems, camcorder recordings, musical sketches and instruments among other things, I decided to base the piece on a video footage from one of Burgess’ numerous interviews on American television, where acoustic music and quotes from the interview echo each other and create a unity”.
February, 1 2015 - 'Níu nætur (Nine nights)' by Emil Rådberg (Sweden)
Performed by the South Iceland Chamber Choir at Dark Music Days in Harpa, Reykjavík - ‘Níu nætur’ is written for chamber choir, the lyrics for the piece is an excerpt from Gerður Kristný’s Blóðhófnir, a paraphrase of ‘Skírnirsmál’ from the ‘Poetic Edda’. Emil said: “I got contact with the writer and she showed me her book “Bloodhoof”, with strong connections to the poetic Edda and the song of Skírnir which I found really interesting to put music to. So, I selected a portion of it, specifically the part where the woman Gerdur has to wait nine nights before meeting with Freyr. In the Edda version Freyr is longing to meet with Gerdur but in Kristny’s version the reader instead sees it from Gerdur’s perspective, who´s nine nights are filled with fear.”
March, 5 2015 - ‘East of the Sun West of the Moon' by Jack White (Wales)
Premièred during Pinquins' Two Nations Tour at Islington Mill, Salford - ‘East of the Sun West of the Moon’ is written for percussion trio and electroacoustics. Jack explained: “Setting this Norwegian folk tale I wanted to use the structure and imagery of the tale to give a sense of the main character's journey. It was my intention to highlight the sexism common to many folktales of the past, and use it for dramatic effect within the work. I recorded the tale in English, Welsh and Norwegian and then worked out where these sounds would work best within the piece."
We are making more new music in 2015-2016!
A second Call for Composers for our Moving Classic - European Network for New Music programme is opening this summer. Stay up to date - and follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Sign-up to our newsletter.