Scotland’s national orchestra welcomes five emerging composers to second nurturing initiative
Five emerging UK composers have been selected to benefit from the Royal Scottish National Orchestra’s RSNO Composers’ Hub, the second annual initiative to develop the talents of individuals in the early stages of their careers.
Ailie Robertson, Robert Allan, Benjamin Graves, Philip Ashworth and Daniel Kidane have been selected as the second participants of the scheme and will be given the opportunity to write for the orchestra in a range of different contexts, develop skills and creative relationships, as well as acquire an understanding of the business of a professional performing arts organisation.
The five composers will spend the 2016:17 Season with the RSNO and during their term each composer will write a ten-minute work for full symphony orchestra, with Scottish composer Stuart MacRae on hand to mentor throughout. The scheme will culminate in a public workshop in the RSNO Centre’s New Auditorium in Glasgow in April 2017, conducted by RSNO Assistant Conductor Holly Mathieson and led by internationally-renowned composer Julian Anderson, from which one work will be chosen to be performed by the RSNO as part of its 2017:18 Season. In January 2017, and in partnership with Celtic Connections, the participants will also attend a composition workshop, each write a three-minute work using a traditional folk tune, provided by Celtic Connections, as inspiration.
RSNO Composers’ Hub is also an opportunity to develop a meaningful collaboration with the RSNO and the other hub members over a sustained period and to get to know the Orchestra, staff and its audience, receiving guidance from different artistic and business areas.
RSNO Executive Producer Manus Carey: “With the inaugural year of Composers’ Hub proving such a success it is with great pleasure that we announce the continuation of the scheme, and welcome our second group of composers; Ailie, Robert, Benjamin, Philip and Daniel, who will work with us across the 2016:17 Season. Our participants have been chosen from a very strong field of applicants and with the additional support of established professional composers Stuart MacRae and Julian Anderson, this Season promises to yield significant results.
Lillie Harris, who was one of the first participants of Composers’ Hub and who received the opportunity to have her work performed at the RSNO’s 2015:16 Season finale: "It has been a real honour to have been part of Composers’ Hub - the people and performers of the RSNO have all been incredibly welcoming and generous. The amount of practical workshop time the RSNO gave all five of us feels unprecedented, and I know I have grown so much as a composer this year as a result.
“As a young composer, to be offered the chance to write such a substantial piece for a large orchestra, and not only hear it played, but to participate in a workshop with some of the best orchestral players around, giving us practical and useful feedback in real time, was utterly invaluable. I am so grateful for the time and attention all five of us were given by the players, Jean-Claude Picard, Brett Dean, Stuart MacRae, and all the team at RSNO throughout our time with them. It’s fantastic to learn that Composers’ Hub will run again next year, as such a positive and beneficial scheme for composers deserves to continue, training fresh talent."
To apply for RSNO Composers’ Hub, applicants were invited to submit a CV, one-page letter explaining why the scheme would be suitable, and two examples of own compositions (preferably at least one for full orchestra), with scores and sound samples.
This month the RSNO began its second season 125th anniversary celebrations and continues its commitment to supporting new music with the performances of newly-commissioned and co-commissioned works including those by former Composers' Hub composer Jay Capperauld, as well as newly written works by Oliver Searle, Sally Beamish, Martin Suckling and Gerald Barry. The Season will also feature performances of other contemporary works written in recent years. For more information on RSNO concerts and events, visit www.rsno.org.uk.