CeReNeM Postgraduate Newsletter [August 2017]

This newsletter is a platform for PhD music students at the Centre of Research in New Music (CeReNeM), University of Huddersfield, to share their recent music activities and upcoming work.

2017 has been a busy year for CeReNeM’s graduate composer cohort, with the research centre hosting a wide range of performers and ensembles, including Garth Knox (viola) [GBR/FR], the duo of Aisha Orazbayeva (violin) [GBR/KAZ] & Joseph Houston (piano) [GBR/GER], Juliet Fraser (soprano) [GBN], Line Upon Line Percussion [USA], and the Quasar Saxophone Quartet [CAN], and guest lecturers including Michael Winter, Tim Rutherford-Johnson, Judy Dunaway, Sam Pluta, Jennifer Walshe, Ann Cleare, and Miller Puckette.

Contributors to this month’s newsletter are Lawrence Dunn, Solomiya Moroz, Jorge Boehringer, Linda Jankowska, Pia Palme, Tadej Droljc, Oli Larkin, and Abel Paúl. Their activities have spanned an exciting range of international festivals, commissions, and performances with major venues, ensembles, and presenters, including the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Quatuor Bozzini (Quebec), Wien Modern (Austria), BBC Radio 3, Darmstadt (Germany), hcmf//, Mixtur Festival (Spain), Café OTO, MADATAC (Spain), and Ars Electronica (Austria) as well as significant academic conferences in the USA, Finland, Germany, and the UK.

PhD Scholarship Recipients

We are excited to announce the recipients of our 2017 PhD Scholarship call:

Hakan UlusThe Jonathan Harvey Scholarship in Composition will be held by Hakan Ulus, a German-Turkish composer. Hakan has studied composition with Ernst Helmuth Flammer, Adriana Hölszky, Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf and Tristan Murail at the Mozarteum University Salzburg (B.A. 2013, M.A. 2015), at the HMT Leipzig (Erasmus), and Contemporary Music at the HfMDK Frankfurt (International Ensemble Modern Academy, M.M. 2016). He has also completed studies in musicology at the University Mozarteum Salzburg.

Hakan has won several stipends (e.g. Berlin-stipend 2017 of the Academy of Arts Berlin, Artist-in-Residence Istanbul 2017 of the Art-Foundation NRW Germany, International Ensemble Modern Academy 2015/16, DRK International Composers Residency Singapore 2015, Harvard Composition Institute Residency 2014, I-Park Foundation Residency 2015, Turkish Cultural Foundation 2014, Arbeitsstipendium Salzburg 2014, EMAS 2014) and prizes (impuls Competition 2017, Recherche Competition) and has received commissions from impuls Festival 2019, Ensemble Francaix of the ANAM 2017, IEMA 2016, City of Munich 2014, and Ensemblia Festival 2013.

His works are performed by many renowned ensembles, including Ensemble Recherche, Ensemble SurPlus, Ensemble intercontemporain, Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Aventure, Talea Ensemble, IEMA-Ensemble and Ensemble mise-en at international festivals of contemporary music (e.g. Salzburg Biennale, Klangspuren Schwaz, KlangNetz Dresden,  ZKM Karlsruhe, ManiFeste Academy Paris). His writings have been published by Musik & Ästhetik, MusikTexte and Wolke Verlag. Currently he is Artist-in-Residence in the Istanbul-Studio of the Art-Foundation NRW, Germany.

James Simmons Portrait and Wedding PhotographyThe Denis Smalley Scholarship in Electronic Music will be held by James Bradbury. James has recently completed his Master of Music qualification with supervision from Dr. Chris Tonkin at the University of Western Australia. He  follows a practice-based research approach and performs electronic music involving highly autonomous or interactive elements. James has won awards from the University of Western Australia, including the Callaway Medal and the Edith Cowan Prize in Music for the most outstanding undergraduate and highest ranked undergraduate student in music, respectively. James was also the 2016 Schenberg Fellow, an position that allowed him to travel to Europe to study at IRCAM, Paris, as part of the ‘Manifeste’ festival and with Dr. Kerry Hagan at the University of Limerick, Ireland. In 2017 he released recordings and Max/MSP patches from one of his systems, Biomimicry, as a digital product, which culminated in its first live performance with experimental West Australian vocalist, Sage Pbbbt.

Sophie FetokakiThe Duncan Druce Scholarship in Performance will be held by Sophie Fetokaki. Sophie has studied a variety of creative disciplines, including singing, acting, dance, literature, composition, and the music of oral traditions. She has studied at the Conservatoire of Amsterdam, City University London, University of Amsterdam, City Literary Institute, and Trinity Laban Conservatoire.

As a singer she has worked with Reinbert de Leeuw, Etienne Siebens, Arnold Marinissen, Alfredo Bernadini; with Asko/Schönberg and the L.A. Philharmonic in Louis Andriessen’s Theatre of the World with the Dutch National Opera; at Radio Kootwijk, Theater Carré, Bimhuis, Melkweg (Netherlands) and the Walt Disney Concert Hall (USA).

As a director and dramaturge she has worked with Ensemble Himeros at the Utrecht Early Music Festival, and at the Amsterdam Fringe Festival with her own performance art quartet Knot Applicable. 

As a curator she works regularly on her interdisciplinary performing arts series DoorKruising (AFK funded), in which she explores performativity, embodiment, the boundaries between art forms, and the translation of concept into performance. 

Lawrence Dunn


Lawrence recently finished making a piece for Juliet Fraser, entitled While we are both, a collaboration with poet Caitlin Doherty premiered in Huddersfield in February. Further performances were given in Chicago in April and again in London in late June.

He has also recently been working with Quatuor Bozzini in Montreal as part of their Composers’ Kitchen programme, with a new string quartet to be premiered in Aberdeen in October as part of the Sound festival. (Additionally, an arrangement of the Star-spangled Banner for string quartet was recently performed at the London concert series 840.)

In May, Lawrence’s orchestra piece Ambling, waking was premiered by the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Ilan Volkov at the Tectonics festival, Glasgow. It will be broadcast on BBC Radio 3, June 3. Lawrence also presented a paper at the Performing Indeterminacy conference in Leeds at the end of June. 

In early July, Lawrence will be working with American violinist Sarah Saviet on a new solo violin piece as part of an Aldeburgh residency. Later in the year, Sarah will be performing Claribel, a piece for violin and piano written for Aisha Orazbayeva and Joseph Houston. New composition projects are also planned with the flautist Carla Rees, and the New York-based ensemble Loadbang. 

Solomiya Moroz

Solomiya_Leonia_TorontoSolomiya has had a number of creative projects over the past few months. In early May her piece On Fragments had its Canadian premiere, performed by the Quasar Sax Quartet in Montreal. Later this same month, Solomiya participated as flutist and composer in Keys, Wind and Strings Festival in Toronto and Montreal (May 24-26) with Thin Edge New Music Collective and Olivia Steimel, accordion premiering works of Canadian composers.

In June Solomiya attended the Klingt Gut! symposium in Hamburg, Germany, where she presented her paper Simulacra Studies and Composition with Gesture:


In this paper I discuss my process in composition with gesture while demonstrating examples from Simulacra Studies and from my recent work. In Simulacra Studies, I explored the drama of a missing piano interface while embodying physically the act of playing without the instrument itself. The piece is concerned with gestuality as a result of the instrumental behaviour where personal qualities are juxtaposed with the embodied capabilities of the performer. There is a video component to the piece which initially establishes real-time correlation with the performer, only to become amplified, disjoined and broken into other narratives as the piece progresses. Thus the physical gestural behaviour becomes magnified with mediatized video experiences of the pianist as a person playing with images of himself on himself as one does with gender, sexuality, power, fragility, superficiality, banality, etc.

Jorge Boehringer

Jorge_Boehringer_Scout_Institute_Electronic_Percussion_photo_Anna_BaštýřováComposer/performer Jorge Boehringer joined University of Huddersfield students Stef Connor, Xueyang Fang, Leah Stuttard, and Professor Rupert Till for a journey to New York City to present papers at the Sounds of Prehistory and Antiquity conference at City University of New York’s Center for Music Iconography.  Jorge gave a talk -slated to be published later this year – about how some of Yorkshire’s local stone age artworks might be viewed as antecedents for contemporary sculptural and sound art practices. He also performed Son of a Waterbull, a piece for wood blocks and electronic tones, at both the conference and later in the week at a concert held in Brooklyn at the Sunview Luncheonette.  The program for this concert also included his solo works Unnatural Isle and Spectral Lama.

Jorge has also recently returned from Prague where he and CeReNuM alumna Eleanor Cully were the invited artists for a workshop and exhibition hosted by Prague College.  The exhibition, CyberSpace#2017, presented the results of a weeklong workshop researching new conceptual and technical bridges within experimental media art practice, network installations, kinetic sculpture, ambisonic and binaural sound, and music.

While in Prague, Cully and Boehringer also premiered their new musical duo Kneeling Coats at the Prague Headphone Festival.  They also presented several solo and ensemble works alongside composer Ian Mikyska and the ensemble Margaretova Citrony, at a concert in the theatre of the Scout Institute on the Old Town Square in Prague.

Jorge performed pieces for viola and electronics on Sunday July 2 at Wharf Chambers in Leeds under his solo-pseudonym Core of the Coalman, alongside American percussion and guitar duo 75 Dollar Bill, and Leeds-based New Wave of Hysterical Mania, Guttersnipe.

Photo courtesy of Anna Baštýřová.

Linda Jankowska

SALEM - Linda _ Emma RIn 2016/17 Linda was primarily busy co-curating and co-producing the Cut and Splice Festival in Manchester. Cut & Splice is as an acclaimed international festival of sound art and experimental music presented by Sound and Music and BBC Radio 3. Performances and artist interviews are broadcast on Radio 3’s flagship contemporary music show, Hear and Now.

The Festival happened in the North for the first time since its inception and welcomed an array of international artists such as Hanna Hartman, Steven Kazuo Takasugi, and Christina Kubisch. It focused on the idea of digital  presence, omnipresence and ambiguity. Distractfold Ensemble presented a carefully selected range of mixed media, electroacoustic, sound art and music theatre works making for a two-day feast of focused listening.

Earlier in August 2016 together with Distractfold Ensemble she returned to Darmstadt to present two programmes of music at the Central station and co- curated a CD featuring remixes and reworking based on the festival’s 70-year archives. Interested in extended performance practice she challenged herself to learn the percussion part for Michael Pisaro’s Concentric Rings in Magnetic Levitation.

In April 2017 together with Distractfold Ensemble she was in residence at Stanford University. Linda also performed at hcmf//, Rainy Days in Luxembourg and Kammer Klang at Café OTO. 

Photo courtesy of Dimitri Djuric.

Pia Palme

C0A5166Last November, Pia Palme’s VOM RAUSCH IM SCHWARM III, a work for ensemble and wind-machine, was premiered by ensemble Kontrapunkte at the Wiener Musikverein during Wien Modern, Vienna’s biggest and oldest festival of contemporary music. In the same month, Pia Palme received the Ernst-Krenek-Preis for contemporary composition, a biennially awarded prize from the City of Vienna. Recently, Pia Palme held a series of performance-lectures, a format she uses to merge vocality, instrumental performance (with her Kueng contrabass recorder), electronics, video, and more theoretical explorations. Performances were held in academic contexts at the Vienna University of Applied Arts, at the 16th annual congress of the GMTH in Hanover, Germany, and at the Vocality/Instrumentality symposium at the University of Huddersfield, but also at Vienna’s renowned jazz club Porgy&Bess.

In spring 2017, Pia Palme finished her thesis The Noise of Mind: A Feminist Practice in Composition under Prof. Liza Lim and Prof. Monty Adkins; she is currently working on a number of commissions (for the Manchester-based trio ATEM, festivals Klangspuren Tirol, BTzM Austria, and Wien Modern) to be premiered in fall 2017. A number or experimental performances complete Pia Palme’s activities, including a performance with German vocal artist Ute Wassermann and double bass player Margarethe Maierhofer-Lischka at the V:NM festival for experimental music in Graz. 

Tadej Droljc


After almost two years of developing various tools, techniques and compositional strategies Tadej Droljc finally finished his 23 minutes long audiovisual piece entitled Capillaries Capillaries that represents the core of his PhD portfolio. The piece was performed at Electric Spring Festival in Huddersfield (UK),MADATAC 08 festival in Madrid (ES), Radeon Amsterdam (NL) and Sajeta Festival in Tolmin (SI), and received some very positive critiques in Tempo, 5 against 4, and Radio Student. The first movement, which also exists as a self standing work entitled Capillaries, won a Most Promising Video Artist Award at the MADATAC 08 festival in Madrid. The full version (Capillaries Capillaries) is currently in the final selection (top 5 in its category) for a Lumen’s Meural Student Prize. 

Tadej will be performing at several upcoming festivals, including Kamfest (15.8., Kamnik, SI) and Ars Electronica (7.9., Linz, AT). 

Oli Larkin

Creative coding lab PhD student Oli Larkin is researching abstract sound synthesis techniques for spatial audio platforms. In June he presented some of the experimental software he has been developing at the annual Sounds in Space symposium at The University of Derby on a 3D with-height ambisonic sound system comprising 28 speakers. The event was live streamed on YouTube in a binaural format so remote listeners could hear the 3D sound via headphones.

In July he was selected to take part in the Sound and Music Computing (SMC) summer school and conference at Aalto University in Helsinki, which featured four days of lectures from world experts on acoustics and signal processing. Later in the year, Oli is scheduled to present a poster at the Roli Audio Developers conference in London.

Abel Paúl

Abel’s work Room & Elbow was awarded the SGAE Young Composer’s Prize (one of Spain’s most important composition prizes) in November last year, while his work Nombre y Vacío, commissioned by Vertixe Sonora Ensemble, was premiered in Santiago de Compostela (Spain) last December. More recently, Abel’s work Mano y Mente, a commission of the Mixtur Festival, was premiered last March in Barcelona. 



Introducing Prof. David Canter, MRes candidate in composition

Prof. David Canter

David Canter is Professor of Psychology at The University of Huddersfield, directing the International Research Centre for Investigative Psychology, which he brought from The University of Liverpool in 2009, where he is now an Emeritus Professor. Although he is most widely known for creating the new field of Investigative Psychology as a scientific development from his activities in ‘offender profiling’ (described in his award winning book Criminal Shadows) he actually started his career as a psychologist in The School of Architecture at Strathclyde University, having published the seminal book The Psychology of Place in 1977.  

He found his way into architecture from a general interest in the arts (having had some exhibitions of his art works over the years) with an underlying fascination with music and many unschooled attempts at composition over the years. This fascination is illustrated in  a paper he presented called ‘Action and Place: The Existential Dialectic’ which was organised around a Bach Suite ! He also composed a string quartet that explored the relationship between Psychology and the Law which was played after his keynote address to a international conference on the same theme.

After many years of composing as a sideline for various amateur groups he has at last taken the opportunity to enrol for a part-time postgraduate research degree in composition within the Centre for Research in New Music at Huddersfield (working with Dr Bryn Harrison).

Prof. David Canter has written this short article: Getting Played where he recalls the experience of hearing his compositions performed for the first time as part of a COMA Summer School and reflects on the relationship of apprentice composers to their compositions.

Seth Woods (PhD ‘cellist) upcoming international tours

Seth Woods

The ‘cellist Seth Woods has recently joined the doctoral programme at Huddersfield after graduating from Masters studies at the Musik Akademie der Stadt Basel where he worked with Frances Marie Uitti and Lucas Fels. His research project is entitled Almost Human… Electric Chair Music about which he saysI am examining the physical and choreographic properties in new complexity works for solo ‘cello and electronics. From the information gathered in my research,  I will create a notation system for string players which is influenced by William Forsythe and Rudolf von Laban. This notation will be used for restorative and archival purposes geared mainly towards ‘cellists interested in this area of music and movement and for dancers and cognitive scientists.’

He has a busy schedule of international touring ahead:

At the Beginning of November I will travel to NYC, Chicago, Houston, and Basel Switzerland to present solo concerts under the concert title ‘Thus Spoke His Tongue.’ The concert will feature premieres of commissioned and dedicated works to me  by composers Fred Ho, Edward Hamel, Gilbert Galindo, Claudio Gabriele as well works by Scelsi and Anton Lukoszevieze. I will return to Basel in December to perform a duo concert with percussionist Brian Archinal featuring work by Carolyn Chen, Simon Steen Andersen, Ryan Carter and Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen.

To end the year I will embark on my second concert tour of China with the Kammerphilharmonie Bad Nauheim Orchester (Frankfurt, DE). I’m seriously looking forward to returning to China again after having toured there as soloist with orchestra back in 2009. Excitedly, it is worth mentioning that I will return to the US to give the American premiere of Chaya Czernowin’s brand new work for solo cello and organ titled Gradual Edge (2012) and then in the summer I will be in residence in Akiyoshidai, Japan to rework the 1972 fluxus work Ice Music for London which originally featured iconic cellist Charlotte Moorman.

Pia Palme – premiere at Wien Modern (Vienna); festival ring-tone, performances, lectures and MuGi Conference

Pia Palme, contrabass recorder & electronics

Pia Palme has an extraordinarily rich and high profile range of international activities coming up this October. Her new composition BARE BRANCHES (2012) is being premiered on 25 October as a cooperation between the festivals Wien Modern and e_may. BARE BRANCHES is a contemporary requiem about female infanticide and male population surplus in Asia and the impact of this situation on global society in general. The libretto is by American author Anne Waldman. Two choirs will perform using audio-scores, a tool Pia has been researching as part of her Phd at Huddersfield and performers include sopranos Salome Kammer and Annette Schönmüller, and the Wiener Kammerchor.

Pia Palme is the artistic curator for this all-night event ‘Wie Wir Wollen’ also including the work of Liza Lim and fellow Huddersfield composer Tamara Friebel.

This year, Pia will provide the annual ringtone for Wien Modern, and will be part of the panel for the Wien Modern’s press conference. Compositional and social aspects of Pia’s works will be discussed by musicologist Dr. Susanne Kogler from KUG Graz as part of a lecture at the international symposium Neue Musik als Weltanschauung during Wien Modern.

The festival e_may was founded by Pia Palme and Gina Mattiello in Vienna in 2007 as a small but engaged platform with a focus on female composers of contemporary and electronic music, commissioning new works from Austrian composers. The development of the festival and its impact on Austria’s scene of contemporary music are remarkable and Pia will present a paper on this at the MuGI Conference Gender, Musical Creativity and Age at Huddersfield on October 6th.

Another result of her research at Huddersfield is a series of performances around the Baroque nun and Mexican author Sor Juana Inez de la Cruz. Completely de-personalized by a contemporary “habit”, Pia performs and improvises with her contrabass-recorder and electronics. After a first appearance at PARAFLOWS festival in Vienna, Sor Juana is re-enacted for two days in the cell of a former monastery turned into a modern hotel-room by invitation of IMA’s festival INTIME RÄUME at Hainburg, Austria.

Eric Maestri – premieres in France, Italy and Switzerland

Eric Maestri‘s VISIONI for ensemble and electronics was premiered on 8 June 2012 at Hall de chars, Strasbourg, by Ensemble L’Imaginaire. The electronic part of the piece was conceived in part in the studios at the University of Huddersfield with the assistance of Dr Alex Harker and Dr Pierre Alexandre Tremblay. The electronic part is constructed to be played entirely in the piano by a transducer loudspeaker.  Link for the video: http://vimeo.com/45792691

Eric has been selected for the composition course Voix Nouvelles, at Royaumont Abbey and his work DUE PAROLE (Endeared III), for choir and string quartet will be premiered there on 22 September. Performers are Atelier Vocale de Royaumont with Diotima Quartet, under the direction of Geoffroy Jourdain.

Ensemble Vortex, Geneva have commissioned a new piece for ensemble and electronics that will be performed in Strasbourg and Geneva on 19 and 31 October. For this piece Eric will use a resonator specially conceived for the performance of the electronics. Lastly, Prometeo Quartet with Valentina Coladonato, will perform at the MILANO MUSICA festival the new version of CELESTOGRAFIA, that was premiered last april in Turin at Unione Musicale concert season.

Pedro Alvarez ‘Matrix12 on tour’

Pedro Alvarez & other participants, Matrix 11

Pedro Alvarez has been awarded a grant from the Experimentalstudio des SWR to participate in the workshop ‘matrix12 on tour’, which takes place during this coming August and September in Amsterdam in collaboration with the Atlas Academy, and later in Warsaw in connection with the Festival Warsaw Autumn. He participated in the matrix festival last year when it was held at the Experimentalstudio in Freiburg, Germany, receiving tuition from Brian Ferneyhough and Chaya Czernowin and also assisting at the final concert.

Sebastian Berweck new publications and performances

Sebastian Berweck (photo by Anika Neese)

Busy times for PhD student Sebastian Berweck: having recorded Klaus Lang’s Sais for New World Records in March he’ll be in the studio again in June/July. For Deutschlandfunk he will record electroacoustic works by Alvin Lucier and another CD will feature compositions for guitar and piano by Julia Deppert and Benjamin Lang.

For the August issue of the German music journal “positionen” he will write two articles on promoting contemporary music. One will deal with his new concepts for teaching contemporary music to students and together with Arno Lücker of the Konzerthaus Berlin there will be an overarching article on the presentation of contemporary music. This accompanies a lecture at the University of Music Frankfurt on the “extended piano”, presenting extended techniques and performance practice issues related to the use of electronics. After the summer break Sebastian has engagements at the prestigious pgnm-festival in Bremen and an invitation to the piano+ – festival at ZKM in Karlsruhe. Following this is a performance of Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Kontakte, which he will play at a festival in Hildesheim along with a lecture about his PhD research at the University of Huddersfield.