Kamilla Arku premiered my Suite for Prepared Piano, volume 1 as part of her repertoire of new music on February 5th. The concert, which also included music by Lainie Fefferman, George Walker, Tania Leon, Virginia Seay and Lowell Liebermann, was part of the Borough New Music series, and also raised money for Music for Liberia. It was a wonderful concert and Kamilla played beautifully.
Fantastic recording session yesterday at Sonica Studios with pianist Yshani Perinpanayagam and guitarist Ned Roberts for several tracks I’ve composed for Jeanie Finlay’s new feature documentary, The Seahorse. Jeanie was so rock n’ roll she flew in and out of Nottingham to lay down some beautiful cello parts. Thanks to Mat and Paul for great engineering.
I’ve really enjoyed working with Jeanie and editor Alice Powell on this excellent film, for Grain Media and BBC.
More good news for My Friend the Polish Girl. It was recently nominated for the Michael Powell award at the Edinburgh International Film Festival, where it also had its UK premiere. I joined the directors Eva and Mateusz and actors Aneta, Emma and Darren for the festival and great fun was had by all. Sadly my short stay meant I didn’t get to see many films but my highlight was the powerful documentary Island of the Hungry Ghosts.
Following on from Edinburgh, My Friend the Polish Girl has been entered into the international competition of New Horizons Festival, Wroclaw, Poland, which takes place at the end of this month, and now the “Certain Regard’ competition at Gydnia Film Festival in September.
I have recently completed my Suite for Prepared Piano, which I’d started during a weekend in composing isolation at The Tractor Shed before Christmas. The preparation for these pieces is fairly light — brass bolts are inserted between 14 strings, creating bell-like tones; blue tack is laid on several others, giving a plucked, stopped sound; most other notes sound as normal. The nine movements come to around 15 minutes, each one lasting between 45 seconds and several minutes.
I was lucky enough to have the wonderful pianist Kamilla Arku record the suite on a lovely Bluthner at Alice’s Loft studio. Engineering at this beautiful space were owner Denise Mangiardi, engineer Joe Wensley and assistant Antonio, who not only did a fantastic job but made the whole experience relaxed and enjoyable.
Kamilla will be performing this Suite next February in a concert series in London, so watch this space….
My Friend the Polish Girl in Bright Future Competition
Last week I finished the last bit of music for My Friend the Polish Girl, a first feature film by Ewa Banaszkiewicz and Mateusz Dymek. Tonight it premieres at Rotterdam Film Festival, in the Bright Future Competition. I enjoyed creating an electronic, minimalist score for this film. Best of luck and sorry I couldn't join you in Rotterdam Ewa and Mateusz!
Last day of the sound mix at the fantastic Twickenham studios last week, and the film is all finished. Here I am with the wonderful Francesco Iannuzzelli (oud) and Omar Saad (viola) at Crypt studios recording the music.
I really enjoyed working on this beautiful with director Ashtar Al Khirsan, editor Tracey Granger and sound mixer Doug Woodward. Looking forward to seeing it on the big screen!