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Richard Barrett: close-up





Richard Barrett close-up (2013-16) performed by Ensemble Studio6

The virtuosic Belgrade-based Ensemble Studio6 perform Richard Barrett’s major new piece close-up, scored for recorders, trumpet, accordion, harp, cello and electronics, the result of four years’ close collaboration between the ensemble and composer.

This 70-minute work comprises a cycle of smaller components (entitled tendril, codex Ia, pauk, codex XIIa, nachtfalter and šuma), that each explore a different angle on the relationship between pre-composed and spontaneous musical actions, while the electronic part explores a range of degrees of flexibility from fixed media to a completely "instrumental" approach.

While not being programmatic or illustrative, many aspects of close-up derive from a contemplation of natural and biological phenomena and, in particular, the ephemeral interventions into the natural world embodied in the sculptures of Andy Goldsworthy, conceiving musical materials as something analogous to the leaves, icicles, thorns and stones which Goldsworthy selects from the natural environment and then returns to it in such a way that the viewer sees them differently from that point on.

Richard Barrett is internationally active as composer and performer, and also teaches at the Institute of Sonology in Den Haag and at the Academy of Creative and Performing Arts at Leiden University. His work encompasses a range from free improvisation to intricately-notated scores, and from acoustic chamber music to innovative uses of digital technology. Recent compositions include everything has changed/nothing has changed for orchestra, given its premiere by the SWR Symphony Orchestra conducted by Peter Rundel in February 2017; and the first instalment of natural causes, a work in progress for the ensemble Musikfabrik, given its premiere in May 2017. Current projects include new works for ELISION, with whom Richard Barrett has been working regularly since 1990, and for the Los Angeles-based ensemble gnarwhallaby. Ongoing performative collaborations include with Paul Obermayer (in FURT), Evan Parker, and several other improvising ensembles such as SKEIN (with Achim Kaufmann, Frank Gratkowski, Wilbert de Joode and others) and Colophony (with Jon Rose and Meinrad Kneer). Richard Barrett’s principal composition teacher was Peter Wiegold, and he currently resides in Belgrade. His work as composer and performer is documented on over forty CDs, including seven discs devoted to his compositions and nine by FURT.

Studio 6 is a collective of Serbian performing musicians, composers and music theorists, devoted to the promotion of today’s music, both composed and improvised. Founded by Nenad Marković and Milana Zarić in 2012, the ensemble are exponents of 'new Serbian avant-garde music scene', collaborating with cutting edge creators in contemporary composition and sound art, and has so far brought many original programmes and premieres to audiences in Belgrade, Novi Sad, Zagreb and Paris. improvisers.

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When and where

7.00pm - 8.30pmTuesday 6th March 2018

Performance Space College Building City, University of London St John Street London EC1V 4PB United Kingdom

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