Latest Comps & Opps

Site Search


Other Resources
News Archive






1 May  

The Ivors celebrate excellence in songwriting and screen composition, across works released in the UK during 2018. The Awards also honour songwriters and composers with categories recognising their contribution to UK music. 

 

The ceremony will take place on 23rd May.

 

 

This year’s nominees are: 

 

Best Album

 

COCOA SUGAR

I’M ALL EARS

JOY AS AN ACT OF RESISTANCE

 

Best Contemporary Song

 

BLACK ROSE

BLUE LIGHTS

LOVE IT IF WE MADE IT

 

Best Original Film Score

 

AMERICAN ANIMALS by Anne Nikitin 

PHANTOM THREAD by Jonny Greenwood 

SPIDER-MAN: INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE  by Daniel Pemberton

 

Best Original Video Game Score

 

ASSASSIN’S CREED ODYSSEY  by Michael Georgiades, Joe Henson and Alexis Smith

Q.U.B.E. 2 by David Housden

SEA OF THIEVES by Robin Beanland

 

Best Song Musically and Lyrically

 

FOUR OUT OF FIVE

NICA LIBRES AT DUSK

NINA CRIED POWER

 

Best Television Soundtrack

 

FLOWERS (SERIES 2) by Arthur Sharpe 

HAPPY NEW YEAR, COLIN BURSTEAD by Clint Mansell 

REQUIEM by Natasha Khan and Dominik Scherrer

 

PRS Most Performed Work

 

BREATHE

SHOTGUN

THESE DAYS

 

 

 





30 Apr  

C:T talks to cross-arts composer and sound designer Roberto David Rusconi, whose new work Variazioni Tiepolo will be premiered by the Minguet Quartet in May.
 

Roberto David Rusconi

Tell us something about your background.

I am a producer of immersive music for opera, dance, music theatre, screen soundtracks and art galleries. I graduated in composition, piano, choir, conducting, specialized in electro-acoustic music and have been awarded a PhD at King's College London on the relationship between music, memory and matter. My profound expertise of the international cultural scene has inspired me to pursue a career as producer, curator and education co-creative projects manager. I am particularly interested in sound projection and live digital sound processing. In recent years I have been collaborating with L-Acoustics and their new processor for immersive sound hyperrealism, L-ISA. 

What was your first success as a composer?

I think my first success was the music I made under a pseudonym for the CD Game Punto per Punto that celebrated Fiat motors 100 years. 1,150,000 copies were released, and I was able to keep the copyrights on the music. 

>> Click here to read the rest of the interview 





24 Apr  

German composer, arranger and conductor Martin Böttcher died on 19th April. He was 91.

 

His early years were dominated by the war; a period in the Luftwaffe was followed by time as a prisoner of war. Having learnt to play the guitar during his incaceration, on his release he made a living playing jazz and arranging music for film composers, including Michael Jary and Hans-Martin Majewski. 

 

Böttcher made his own cinematic debut in 1955, writing the music for the satirical film Der Hauptmann und sein Held. This proved to be the launch of a highly successful film and later television music career. 

 

Perhaps his most well-known score was for the Karl May film Der Schatz im Silbersee, with its Old-Shatterhand-Melodie:





24 Apr  

UK Music are asking composers to fill in their 2019 survey to allow them to analyse trends and to document day-to-day conditions in the UK music business.

 

Their last report revealed that the UK music industry contributed £4.5bn to the UK economy and sustained over 145,000 jobs. The information helped UK music to argue their case with government, to shape future strategy and to defend areas under threat.

 

The survey is available, here: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/UKMusic





17 Apr  

The Tectonics Festival takes place over the weekend of 4th–5th May in Glasgow. On the first day harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani will perform recent works by Anahita Abbasi, Miroslav Srnka, George Lewis as well as by one of the great pioneers of electronic music, Luc Ferrari. There are world premieres from the BBC SSO of works from Martin Arnold and Sarah Davachi; two BBC commissions from Christian Wolff and Juliana Hodkinson; a co-commission with WDR Cologne and the BBC from Mauro Lanza; and the UK Premieres of Jennifer Walshe’s The Site Of An Investigation and Andrew Hamilton’s c. Lucie Vítková is also in residence for the weekend with her installation Makeup Scores: Environmental Music. The work features scores drawn with old or expired make-up performed by Vítková with Maya Verlaak, Suze Whites and Jorge Boehringer.

 

The Norfolk and Norwich Festival (10th–26th) offers a whole host of cultural events, including theatre, cabaret, circus, dance, literature and visual arts. Its list of contemporary music may be a little on the light side for some, but are interesting nevertheless: an ambitious new project Celebration combining music, poetry and dance on 11th; chamber music, including new compositions from June Talbot (voice), Iain Bellamy (saxophones) and Huw Warren (piano) on 13th; new works by Venezuelan singer Nella Rojas on 15th; pianist/composer Tord Gustavsen on 16th; and composer/organist Kit Downes on 22nd (see video, bottom, for a flavour of his work). 

 

Founded by John Metcalf in 1969, the Vale of Glamorgan Festival (18th–24th) is celebrating its 50th anniversary. It remains, as ever, focused on the music of today and particularly on music by Welsh or Welsh-based composers. World premieres this year include works by Charlie Barber, Mark David Boden, Graham Fitkin, Gareth Glyn, Lynne Plowman, Steph Power, Guto Pryderi Puw, Claire Victoria Roberts, David Roche, Ben Wallace and Robert Fokkens.

 

The Prague Spring Festival goes on for the best part of a month (12th–4th June) and features around fifty concerts. Amongst these is the chance to hear Harfenianna, a new Concertino for Harp and Strings by Ondřej Kukal on 20th; Jakub Rataj’s æther for theremin, oboe & piano quintet on 24th; Jana Vöröšová’s Cloud Atlas for saxophone quartet on 26th; and the European premiere of Miroslav Srnka’s Overheating on 27th. 

 

Of the many other premieres one can hear this month (see my picks below), I make special mention of Roberto David Rusconi’s new work Variazioni Tiepolo at the Southbank Centre’s Purcell Room on 17th. Rusconi is a fascinating figure whose work is informed by shamanism, ritual, music embodiment and 3D sound projection. We will talk with him here on C:T next week.

 

Premiere Picks

 

UK

 

1st Lighthouse, Poole. Leshnoff, Suite for Cello, Strings and Timpani. 

2nd Queen's Hall, Edinburgh, Edinburgh. Dove, Accordion Concerto. Scottish Chamber Orchestra.

7th Royal Festival Hall, London. McDowall, Da Vinci Requiem. Philharmonia Orchestra, Wimbledon Choral Society. 

9th Invisible Wind Factory, Liverpool. Goves, Parker, Zaba premieres. Solem String Quartet.

17th Purcell Room, London. Rusconi, Variazioni Tiepolo. Minguet Quartet. 

18th BBC Hoddinott Hall, Cardiff. Bowden, Descent. BBC National Orchestra of Wales.

 

Europe

 

1st Rudolfinum: Dvořák Hall, Prague. Unknown, Winning work from the Czech Philharmonic Composers’ Competition. Czech Philharmonic Orchestra

4th Liszt Academy: Grand Hall, Budapest. Elia, Implicate Inklings. Concerto Budapest.

8th Victoria Hall, Geneva. Montalbetti, Flute Concerto, “Memento vivere” Orchestre de la Suisse Romande.

16th Pierre Boulez Saal, Berlin. Widmann, Melodie. Kian Soltani, Cello; Nathalia Milstein, Piano

17th Concertgebouw: Recital Hall, Amsterdam. Davies, New work. Asko/Schönberg.

18th Concertgebouw: Main Hall, Amsterdam. de Raaff, Violin Concerto no. 2 "North Atlantic Light”. Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra.

22d Grieg Hall (Grieghallen), Bergen. Knausgård, New Work. 

25th Universitetsaulaen, Universitet i Bergen, Bergen. Hvoslef, String Quartet no. 4. 

25th Philharmonie 1: Grande salle Pierre Boulez, Paris. Jarrell, Piano Concerto. Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France.

30th Concertgebouw Brugge: Chamber Music Hall, Bruges. Lang, Bernhard, HERMETIKA IX ‘vox angeli II.’ Nadar Ensemble.

 

World

 

2nd Symphony Hall, Boston. Currier, Aether for violin and orchestra. Baiba Skride, Violin; Boston Symphony Orchestra

2nd Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles. Andriessen, The only one. Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.

10th Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles. Adès, New Ballet Work for Orchestra. Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra. 

14th Saint-Sixte Church, Saint-Laurent, Montreal. Brown, Trumpet Concerto. Orchestre Métropolitain de Montréal.

19th University of Utah: Libby Gardner Concert Hall, Salt Lake City. Thomas, Folding. Thierry Fischer, Conductor; Madeleine Adkins, Violin; Davidson, Mark, Trombone; Hardink, Jason, Piano; Johnson, Matt, Cello; Smith, Mercedes, Flute.

24th Roy Thomson Hall, Toronto. Pal, New Work. Toronto Symphony Orchestra.

 

Kit Downes: Rings of Saturn





17 Apr  

It seems that the majestic Cavaille-Coll organ at Notre Dame has emerged from the dreadful conflagration relatively unscathed.  Vincent Dubois, the organist titulaire, said ‘It’s a miracle! The most recent news, a priori, [the organ] is saved.’ He also however, stuck a note of caution about the stability of the building, especially the vault, which was severely damaged in the fire. The priority, he said, was to remove the instrument whilst repairs are made. 

 

This came as the first pictures have emerged of the inside of the building, which shows its fabric in much better shaped than many feared. In particular, the three rose windows, with their precious 13th century glass, appear intact.

 

Messiaen's Le Banquet Celeste, played by Pierre Cochereau





13 Apr  

 

Arts Council England has published findings from a consultation exercise that aims to help formulate a strategy for its next ten years. Taking place between October 2018 and January 2019, they listened to the views of a number of interested parties—museums, libraries, arts organisations, funders, policy makers, local authorities, education and young people. The report can be read here

 

Following a speech given by ACE’s deputy chief director Simon Mellor given at East London Dance’s 2019 Ideas Summit, The Stage reported that the new direction would mean that ‘Relevance not excellence will be new litmus test for funding.’ This was latter denied by the ACE CEO Darren Henley, who tweeted: ‘ We see no opposition between ‘relevance’ and ‘excellence’.  They can and should complement each other. The headline in The Stage article doesn’t reflect what was actually said in the speech it reported.’ He also said that no decisions had been made about the strategy and that a new round of consultations would begin in June. At that point, interested parties, including readers here can get involved.





9 Apr  

Sibelius has just released version 2019.4, with new playback features and enhancements to Review mode. Their upgrade email also offers a 40% discount on the NotePerformer sound library. That’s $77.99 instead of $129.

 

I’ve always wanted to install a different sound set for Sibelius, but have been put off by reports of how difficult it can be to get them to work. NotePerformer claims to make the process as easy as using the built-in set. It also offers a full range of orchestral and brass band sounds, intelligent musical phrasing, a wide variety of articulations and nice extras such as a variety of pipe organ stops, brass mutes and effects such as bowed percussion, harmonics and snapped pizzicato. The set is also fully compatible with Finale and Dorico. 

 

Interested in the offer, I downloaded the demo version of NotePerformer 3 last night. It was as easy to install as they claim—once you have done so you simply choose the sound set in the configuration dialogue that contains the Sibelius sounds sets and general MIDI, then everything works as before. One thing I did notice, however, was that on my five-year-old Mac (8GB of RAM running latest version of Sibelius) there was a certain amount of lag when switching sounds in the mixer panel. At first I thought this a deal-breaker, but it soon settled to an acceptable level. This probably speaks more of my need to upgrade.

 

The sounds themselves and the playback were at times revelatory, even if not without disappointments. First of all, the balance is much more convincing, with brass especially being much further forward than in the Sibelius set. The quality of the sounds were, in most cases, also much better than those of Sibelius. Sometimes the difference was shocking, as when I tried out a piece I had written for bassoon quartet. Whilst nothing can beat real players, it was surprising to find something that felt so immediate and convincing.

Other tests of woodwind, brass and string yielded similar results—if your main interest is orchestral instruments this is an obvious purchase. 

 

Two areas of disappointment were harder to ignore. There is just one piano sound, which sounds like a Wild West saloon piano recorded in a bathroom. For such an essential instrument this is unforgivable. Also disappointing were the vocal samples. Whilst they are not great in Sibelius either, they do have a focus that was not present here, which to my mind makes them easier to work with.

 

Despite these two disappointments, NotePerformer remains a tempting prospect. Now I’ve experienced it I think it’s an option I’m always going to want to have available. To make up your own mind I’d suggest checking out one of many YouTube videos that compare the installed Sibelius Sounds with NotePerformer (one of which you can find below). Or you can head straight over to the NotePerformer website and try their 30-day free trial.

 

NotePerformer vs. Sibelius Sounds

 

Product Summary





27 Mar  

Boris Johnson today reacted to the EU’s passing of Article 13, its new copyright law designed to protect content creators, including composers:





27 Mar  

The Manchester-based ensemble Psappha has just launched ‘Composition Bank’, an initiative that allows music lovers to directly support the creation of new works. 

 

For the 2019–2020 season three composers have been selected as beneficiaries: Mark-Anthony Turnage, Alissa Firsova and George Stevenson. 

 

Donations start at £100 per score. Supported will get their names listed on the chosen score, invitations to workshops/rehearsals, the option to buy the score signed by the composer and an official certificate of support.

 

The programme officially opens tomorrow (28th March), but the donations pages already appear to be live.

 

 

For more information or if you wish to donate: www.psappha.com/composition-bank/







Archive
 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  | ... |  61  |