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World New Music Days


Welsh Section

shortlisted composers

Quietening by Eloise Nancie Gynn has been selected by the International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM) to represent Wales at this year's World New Music Days. The piece will be performed as part of the ISCM's festival which takes place in the Faroe Islands between 22-30 June 2024. Quietening will be performed by xxxxxxxxxxx,  on xxxxx at  xxxxxxxxxx

Quietening (2020) for solo cello

This piece was written during lockdown, as a reflection of the quietening of the human world. It’s inspired by our daily walks along a woodland path, seeing the bluebells and oak leaves unfurling day by day, butterflies dancing, and our baby daughter pointing to everything in sight. It’s also inspired by the arrival of migrant birds like the willow warbler and chiffchaffs whose songs make an appearance in the piece.

Eloise Nancy Gynn was one of six composers short-listed by the Welsh panel for consideration by the ISCM. The other composers were:

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Leona Jones in(ex)teriors (2020) 

A multi-channel sonic imagining of influential Gothic writer Arthur Machen's (1863-1947) semi-autobiographical novel The Hill of Dreams. Machen’s writings abound with sound, descriptively and stylistically, and probe the liminal spaces between ir/rationality and un/realities. Exploring these fascinations, in(ex)teriors includes field recordings from Machen’s birthplace (Caerleon, South Wales) and Voice that speaks his Written.

The novel was written in the late 19th century, a period of major societal and technological changes in Britain. Leona's sonic journey embraces Machen’s depictions of the unlimited potential of human minds - the creation of beauty and horror within struggles to make sense of profound disturbances. Listen to in(ex)teriors

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Andrew Lewis Fantazia Upon One Note (2021) for solo violin with fixed-medium electronics
Composed in 1680, Henry Purcell’s famous Fantazia Upon One Note has inspired a number of works by modern composers, including Elliot Carter, Peter Maxwell Davies, Oliver Knussen and George Benjamin. This piece continues that fascination, and the combination of electronics and solo violin also pays homage to the many composers of electroacoustic music who have explored the endless possibilities offered by one note, especially Bernard Parmegiani in his Incidences/Résonances. Fantazia Upon One Note was composed in 2021 and premiered by Darragh Morgan on February 11 2022 in the Studio Theatre, Pontio, Bangor, as part of the Bangor New Music Festival.  Listen to Fantazia Upon One Note

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John Metcalf Towards Silence (2020) for string quartet

Carol Nixon the commissioner of Towards Silence gave one stipulation - that it reflect the crisis of the extinction of species on Earth. The core of the piece is the second movement, where the same musical material is played three times, the musical texture thinned out with each repetition. On either side are two ‘journeys’ characterised by a walking pulse, finally a brief Epilogue: Winter Journey 1; Towards Silence Winter Journey 11 ;Epilogue – ‘With Stars’. The music is quiet and spare, using ‘practice’ as well as standard mutes with long silences within, as well as between, sections. Listen to Towards Silence

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David John Roche A Prayer at the Edge of Silence (2021) for string quartet

A Prayer at the Edge of Silence is a 5-movement string quartet about hope. Each movement – each prayer – has a different character and is a meditation on a way of feeling, a wish, or a contemplation. The work is a call for clearer, happier, calmer times ahead. The five prayers are titled as follows: A Prayer for Good Times; A Prayer at the Edge of Silence; A Prayer for Clear Thought; A Second Prayer at the Edge of Silence; A Prayer of Warmth and Happiness. Listen to A Prayer at the Edge of Silence

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Andrew Wilson-Dickson String Quartet no. 2 (2020) 

This is my second quartet and completed in the 2020 lockdown (the first was commissioned by the BBC in 1981). It displays my delight in the gift of life: its richness and its rhythmic complexity. From the opening point of peace, the music evolves until its progress is thwarted by a sudden evaporation and repeated chords. These send the music back to start another evolution. Altogether there are four attempts at this process and after a particularly ferocious outburst, the tension is gradually resolved into memories of the tranquillity with which the quartet began. Listen to String Quartet no. 2

ISCM Welsh Section
ISCM Welsh exists to promote the aims of the ISCM, both within Wales, and in co-operation with the British, Irish, Scottish and other, international Sections. The Society aims to promote contemporary music and raise its public profile, through effective global networking, communication and facilitation of multilateral activities between the members.

Its mission is to:

  • Raise the profile of contemporary music through the collective strength of the Society’s global network and  membership makeup.

  • Pursue exposure, research and performance of contemporary music through initiatives by its membership, as well as collaboration with affiliated bodies.

  • Showcase the diversity of contemporary music worldwide through the World New Music Days Festival.

Gweithiau ar restr fer Adran Gymraeg ISCM
ar gyfer Dyddiau Cerddoriaeth Newydd y Byd,
Ynysoedd Faro 2024

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