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Philip Cashian Interview

Posted on 19 July 2007. © Copyright 2004-2020 Composition:Today

C:T speaks to composer Philip Cashian whose music has been performed and broadcast worldwide. Commissions have included the BBC and the LSO.

Tell us something about your background.

I did a BMus at Cardiff University then went on to study with Olly Knussen and Simon Bainbridge at the Guildhall. In 1990 I was the Britten Fellow at Tanglewood where I studied with Lukas Foss.

When did you start composing?

When I was 12.

Which composers have influenced you the most?

Stravinsky, Zappa, Sibelius

Which non-musical influences have affected your music most?

All sorts of things but at the moment I'm particularly interested in the St Ives artists from around 50 years ago.

Tell us something about your working method as a composer. Give us something that might be or might have been a starting point for a piece.

I don't really think I have a working method other than trying to make myself stay at the desk and not get distracted. Starting points for pieces are usually 4 note chords out of which I develop all my musical material as well as very general plans for pieces jotted onto a time line.

Do you have a routine? A place that's special

Yes. My study at the top of the house.

What's the craziest idea for a piece you've ever had?

Don't think I've had one.

What do you see as the role (intended and actual) of new music in the modern world?

To communicate with other people.

What inspires you to write?

I enjoy writing and that in itself inspires me. Also, usually, the musicians I'm writing for.

What are your plans for the future?

I have no concept of the future.

How can people find out more about you?

Interview by Composition:Today © Copyright 2004-2020

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