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Weeks, James: Mural (Confront)

A work for two quartets of voices about our relationship with the world, using four text sources from Rutherford Bowey & Westerberg, John Cage, Fernando Pessoa/Alberto Caeiro, and a critiques of "Vermeer's painting The Little Street"; a fascinating weaving of voice and song.
 

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product information:


Label: Confront
Catalog ID: ccs 47
Squidco Product Code: 21153

Format: CDR
Condition: New
Released: 2015
Country: Great Britain
Packaging: CD in a tin case
Recorded at City University, London, England, during March-April 2014.


Personnel:

James Weeks-composer

Jimmy Holliday-voice

Juliet Fraser-voice

Lucy Goddard-voice

Stephen Jeffes-voice

Amanda Morrison-voice

Jonathan Bungard-voice

Jonathan Saunders-voice

Tom Williams-voice

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Artist Biographies:

"Hailed as 'one of the most inventive young composers and conductors out there' by The Guardian, James Weeks enjoys a growing international reputation both for his own music and for his consummate performances of contemporary repertoire.

Born in Blackburn in 1978, he read Music at Cambridge before completing a PhD in Composition at Southampton University, studying with Michael Finnissy. His music has been commissioned and performed by many leading performers including London Sinfonietta, Apartment House, Quatuor Bozzini, Alison Balsom, EXAUDI, Morgan/Dullea, Wandelweiser, New London Chamber Choir, Uroboros Ensemble, Endymion, Anton Lukoszevieze and Christopher Redgate. He has been performed at UK and European festivals and venues including City of London, Spitalfields and Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festivals, Gaudeamus (Amsterdam), Quincena Musical (San Sebastian), de Bijloke (Ghent), Wandelweiser (Düsseldorf, Munich), Weimarer Frühjahrstage and Mafra (Portugal). His music is heard regularly on BBC Radio 3's Hear and Now, and in 2012 he signed to University of York Music Press.

Since 2005 the main focus of his music has been on solo and small-ensemble works exploring elemental or primary musical materials and processes, either left bare or built up into polyphonic structures of considerable density. Recent major works include Schilderkonst (for mixed ensemble, 2003-4) Stacking, Weaving, Building, Joining (for any number of players, 2006), the Harmonies of South London series (for various ensembles, 2008-11), Burnham Air (for oboe d'amore, 2008), Hototogisu (for children's choir, 2007), TIDE (for ensemble and electronics, 2007-10), Parnassus (for vocal and string sextets, 2008-9), Mala punica (for eight solo voices, 2008-9), and The Freedom of the Earth (for chorus and instruments, 2011).

As a conductor, he is best known for his work with the contemporary specialists EXAUDI www.exaudi.org.uk, the vocal ensemble he founded with the soprano Juliet Fraser in 2002. With them he maintains a busy international touring schedule, collaborating regularly with the world's leading composers, new music soloists and ensembles, and has released six acclaimed CDs, of Finnissy, Fox, Lutyens and Skempton on Mode, NMC and Metier. The ensemble specialises in the most complex new music - performances of Ferneyhough, Dillon, Xenakis, Gervasoni, Birtwistle and Finnissy have won them worldwide praise - and experimental music, often presented alongside repertoire from the Renaissance or early baroque.

He was Musical Director of the New London Chamber Choir www.nlcc.org.uk and Orlando Chamber Choir (www.orlandochoir.org.uk) from 2007-2011. In great demand as a guest conductor, he has worked with London Sinfonietta, BBC Singers, L'Instant Donné (Paris), Raschèr Saxophone Quartet, New Music Players, Endymion, IXION, I Fagiolini and Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, with whom he recorded Howard Skempton's Chamber Concerto for NMC. He is also much in demand as a choral animateur and tutor, and regularly leads courses for Dartington International Summer School.

He is also active as an organ recitalist, pianist and writer on contemporary music, and broadcasts regularly on early and new music for BBC Radio 3. In 2006 he co-founded the ensemble Kürbis with the composer Claudia Molitor, dedicated to the performance of contemporary and experimental chamber music. The ensemble has performed in London (The Cutting Edge; Spitalfields Festival), Cambridge (Kettle's Yard), and at Soundwaves Brighton and recorded for Radio 3. In 2010 he was Artistic Associate of the Spitalfields Festival (London). He was appointed Associate Head of Composition at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London, in September 2012."

-James Weeks Website (http://www.jamesweeks.org/biography.html)
7/17/2019

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Juliet Fraser was educated at the Purcell School as a first-study oboist and then at Cambridge University where she read Music and History of Art. It was whilst a student there that she started singing, in the chapel choir of Clare College; subsequently she sang with professional choirs such as Polyphony, Tenebrae, the Monteverdi Choir, The King's Consort, The Tallis Scholars and BBC Singers. In early music, she has worked with European consorts Ensemble Polyharmonique and Gli Angeli Genève. She was a regular member of the soloists of Collegium Vocale Gent, directed by Philippe Herreweghe, for six years, performing and recording Renaissance polyphony by Lassus, Vitoria, Gesualdo and Byrd.

In new music, Juliet has performed as a soloist with Klangforum Wien, ICTUS, Plus-Minus, We Spoke: New Music Company, London Sinfonietta and BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in festivals such as hcmf//, Tectonics Glasgow, Transit 20/21, Donaueschinger Musiktage, MaerzMusik and Wien Modern. Recently, she has created duo projects with pianist Mark Knoop and percussionist Maxime Echardour. She has premièred well over 100 works, many of which have been written for her, working particularly closely with composers Michael Finnissy, Bernhard Lang, Rebecca Saunders, Stefano Gervasoni, Frank Denyer, Christopher Fox, Matthew Shlomowitz, Cassandra Miller and Andrew Hamilton.

Juliet is principal soprano of EXAUDI, the acclaimed contemporary music vocal ensemble, which she founded in 2002 with composer/conductor James Weeks and with whom she makes regular appearances at major European festivals such as Aldeburgh, Spitalfields, hcmf//, ManiFeste, Festival d'Automne, Ars Musica, Wittener Tage and Darmstadt Ferienkurse. Opera roles include Neige in Catherine Kontz's NEIGE at Grand Théatre de Luxembourg (2013), Tina in Limbus Limbo by Stefano Gervasoni at Musica Strasbourg, Automne en Normandie, Opera de Reims and Opera Comique, Paris (2012), and Grace Hartigan in Larry Goves's I do this I do that (2011). Juliet has been nominated twice for an RPS Award in the Singer category and is currently supported by Aldeburgh Music's Open Space scheme. Her first dedicated solo disc, a recording of Morton Feldman's Three Voices, was released on the HatHut label in November 2016."

-Juliet Fraser Website (https://www.julietfraser.co.uk/biography/)
7/17/2019

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.
track listing:


1. Mural 52:03
sample the album:




descriptions, reviews, &c.

"mural" is a book of individual pieces, for 1-4 voices of an SATB quartet [soprano/alto/tenor/baritone], each a page long. There is no specific way in which they should be ordered or arranged in a performance. However, if there are two quartets of singers they may sing the pieces in an overlapped antiphonal sequence.

Texts selected from:Bowey, Rutherford & Westerberg: Birds of GatesheadJohn Cage: writingscritiques of Vermeer's painting The Little StreetFernando Pessoa/Alberto Caeiro: The Keeper of Sheep

First performed by EXAUDI, Sounds New Festival, Canterbury, 4th May 2014.

Performed by EXAUDI as part of MURAL installation with video by Sam Belinfante, at Spitalfields Music Summer Festival, Lime Wharf, London, 8th June 2014.

Related Categories of Interest:


Compositional Forms
Avant-Garde
Unusual Vocal Forms
Spoken Word
Quartet Recordings
John Cage
London & UK Improv & Related Scenes
New in Compositional Music


Other Releases With These Artists:
Recommended & Related Releases:
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