Friday 31 January 2020, 7.30pm
840, a London-based concert series dedicated to producing unique programmes of brand-new experimental and minimal compositions, is celebrating its 5th birthday with this very special event at Café Oto.
The acclaimed soprano Juliet Fraser will be singing alongside a string ensemble of cello trio (Colin Alexander, Stephanie Tress and Peteris Sokolovskis) and viola (Francesca Gilbert), as well as vocalists Sara Rodrigues and Rodrigo B. Camacho of the New Maker Ensemble.
At the heart of the evening are two high-profile new commissions from composers Laurence Crane and John Lely, both of whom are long-term friends of the series and whose music has featured frequently at 840 throughout the years.
The rest of the programme will consist of a selection from the many pieces that have been written especially for 840’s concerts. Luxuriant, striking and surprising works by composers Georgia Rodgers, Sergei Zagny, Jonathan Cole, Nicholas Peters and Marc Sabat will feature alongside brand-new works by 840 curators, Alex Nikiporenko and James Luff. There’ll also be a module from composer Cassandra Miller and Juliet Fraser’s astonishing ongoing collaboration Tracery.
This concert has been made possible with generous support from the Richard Thomas Foundation, Arts Council England the RVW Trust and the Hinrichsen Foundation.
Soprano JULIET FRASER specialises in the gnarly edges of contemporary classical music. She regularly appears as a guest soloist with ensembles such as Musikfabrik, Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Modern, Remix, Talea and Quatuor Bozzini, and is a core member of EXAUDI vocal ensemble, which she co-founded with composer/conductor James Weeks and which celebrates its twentieth anniversary this year. She is an active commissioner of new repertoire and has worked particularly closely with composers Laurence Crane, Pascale Criton, Bernhard Lang, Cassandra Miller and Rebecca Saunders. Juliet’s discography reflects the full breadth of her repertoire: she has recorded early music with Collegium Vocale Gent and EXAUDI for release on Harmonia Mundi, Outhere and Winter & Winter, and solo albums of contemporary repertoire for NEOS, Kairos, HCR and Hat Hut. Juliet is the founder and artistic director of the eavesdropping festival in London and co-director of all that dust, a little independent label for new music.
Laurence Crane lives and works in London, and his music has regularly been broadcast, recorded and performed across the world.
His output consists mainly of music written for the concert hall, although his list of works also includes pieces written for film, radio, theatre, dance and installation. He is particularly closely associated with the British ensemble Apartment House, who have to date given around forty performances of his works.
‘In Laurence Crane's music the material chosen is familiar; mostly consonant, often tonal, triads, elementary chords, old well-used intervals rescued from a previous unjust ignorant redundancy. The familiar sound or image is abstracted by being placed in a new, clean and often isolated context, like a museum glass case. Its innate value is respected by it remaining alone, unornamented and unaffected during the course of the piece by any development or transformation; the image staying as and where it is by being gently reiterated or prolonged so that it holds our full attention.'- Tim Parkinson
John Lely composes and improvises with acoustic and electronic objects and instruments. He is interested in the variety of sounds, correspondences and experiences that can arise through the use of limited materials. Recent works have been composed for Erik Carlson, Michael Duch, Mira Benjamin, Tre Voci Cello Ensemble and Philip Thomas. He has formative and ongoing collaborations with John Tilbury, Apartment House, Bozzini Quartet and edges. He is co-author, with James Saunders, of Word Events: Perspectives on Verbal Notation (Continuum/Bloomsbury 2012), a book about text scores. https://johnlely.co.uk/about.html