Thomas Simaku – World Premiere in Prague
Thomas Simaku’s work for solo piano, raggio lunare, will receive its world premiere at the Academy of Performing Arts, Martinu Hall, in Prague on 4 November 2017. The work will be performed by Egli Prifti, who has focused on Simaku’s music as part of his doctoral programme.
Thomas Simaku has written the following notes about this new work:
‘A single note in the middle register (C-sharp, to be precise) opens up to form a chord of two major seconds a semitone apart. Through this process of multiplication, it gradually encompasses the total chromaticism; i.e. the same chord is presented in three different places. To put it the other way round, the chromatic spectrum here is made-up of just one chordal structure, which retains its identity in three different locations.
Whilst these details are a small part of the pre-compositional work that deals with pitches and their role in the articulation of the macro-structure, the main idea for this piece is an extra-musical one: an imaginary ‘object’ that gradually reveals its three-dimensional quality. Sonic resonances are thus essential to the imagery of the music here, and the piano is the ideal instrument for it.
The chord formations mentioned above could well be described as three specific “constellations” operating in their own time and space, and are presented in constant interaction with one another. During this interactive process, which occurs within a predominantly chromatic environment, wide spectra of harmonic colours, as well as nuances and gestures, including some massive chordal structures, are obtained. Metaphorically, but in no way programmatically, I have likened the main idea for this piece with that of a ray that stems from a sound-nucleus freely orbiting its “lunar-like” sonic galaxy – hence the title raggio lunare.’ ©TS
James Cave has been announced as the winner of the ‘Same Notes – Ten Times Sweeter’ Competition
This competition was for a piece for unaccompanied descant or treble recorder, three to four minutes long.
James Cave’s setting of ‘Ave Maria’, commissioned by the Dean and Chapter of York Minster for the Nine Lessons and Carols 2016, has been selected for inclusion on a new CD of pieces written for York Minster, to be released on Regent Records later this year.
For the second year running, Martin Suckling features in the Scottish Awards for New Music. His flute concerto, The White Road, premiered last February by Katherine Bryan and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, is shortlisted in the ‘Large Scale Work (11+ performers) sponsored by PRS for Music’ category. Over 180 nominations were submitted by artists, audience members and the general public, reinforcing the depth and breadth of new music activity in Scotland. The awards event will be held at the Drygate Brewery, Glasgow on Wednesday 7 March 2017.
PhD student Patrick John Jones has been selected for PRS for Music’s new scheme for composers, Accelerate.
On Friday 12th January, Martin Suckling’s new string quintet, Emily’s Electrical Absence, a collaboration with poet Frances Leviston and scientists from the PETMEM consortium, receives its premiere in London as part of the ‘Time Unwrapped’ series at King’s Place. The following day in New York City, Lost Dog New Music Ensemble give the second US performance of Martin’s clarinet trio Visiones (after Goya) as part of their mini-festival of British music, ‘The UK Commotion’.
The Journal of Music, Technology and Education recently published a special edition on the Online Orchestra, an Arts & Humanities Research Council-funded project that run between October 2014 to March 2016.