archive * archive

St Cecilia’s Hall, Tuesday 19t February 7-8pm

Tickets available from eventbrite

archive * archive is our opening festival concert and features instruments from the collection at St Cecilia’s museum that have been sampled to create a new, dynamic library of sounds. Performances on the original instruments will be remixed and reinterpreted through new pieces and projects made with the sample libraries by Gavin McCabe and Leo Butt.

Reserve a space at this event now:

Hornist Andy Saunders spent an exhausting day with us playing various horns from the collection in December. With what’s left of his lip after that he’ll play two pieces for solo horn written for him by Pete Downling and Jane Stanley. Jenny Nex also made a sound library with us on a sideless violin, she’ll perform some short peices on the instrument to show its acoustic self in-situ.

Lalla Rhookh by Jane Stanley

For narrator and solo Eb Horn

Dead S(o)low by Pete Dowling

For horn and resonant piano.

W. Speaks by Gavin McCabe

Gavin McCabe has composed two pieces with the sample libraries:

W. Speaks attempts to provide a sonic backdrop to the voice of a Syrian Refugee as they relay their experience of migration from their homeland. At the time of this interview W, a husband and father of two children, had been existing for four months in the infamous ‘Jungle’ refugee camp in Calais, France.


The inspiration for this piece came from watching footage of tsunami’s. We are surrounded by these great, enigmatic bodies of water that have the capacity to render us helpless at a given time. The ocean can evoke notions of mystery and enchantment but also harbors a colossal destructive energy. Wave seeks to create a wall of evolving textures that emerge and swell in intensity and foreboding as the piece progresses.L

archive*2³ by Leo Butt

This piece attempts to showcase a range of unique instruments from the collection at St. Cecilia’s by sequencing and processing recorded samples, manipulating them to produce sound beyond their physical capabilities. The textures that appear throughout the piece pay homage to the acoustic properties of the instruments, whilst simultaneously showcasing their versatility when combined with modern production practises.

Musica Nova

Pete Stollery will diffuse two prize-winning pieces from Prague’s Musica Nova competition on our 8 channel sound system:

Chromatocosmos by Epa P. Fassianos (winner)

Chromatocosmos (2015): is a stereo fixed – media electroacoustic piece which is based on Baghlamas’s original recordings. Baghlamas is a traditional Greek instrument which has its roots to an Ancient Greek instrument called Pandoura. In my work I made an attempt to explore the characteristics of the instrument and its relation to history and Hellenic Culture via acousmatic music. The work has references to melodic lines widely used by Baghlamas’ performers but is mainly an attempt to recreate a new sonic world. I also aimed to use the instrument in innovative ways, from the recording process (use of sounds emerging from the chording of the instrument) to the development process (application of a wide range of transformations which would lead the sound in new boundaries). The addition of background cinematic-style sounds emerging from the Baghlamas through various transformations, creates a constant dialogue with the foreground sounds. The various sonic colours observed as the piece evolves justify its title.

Epa Fassianos is a Greek composer of electroacoustic music. He was born in Athens in 1982. He has attended both the University of York (MA in Music Technology) and the University of Sussex (MA in Composition for Media and Film and MPhil in Musical Composition). His BA in Greece was in Informatics and Computer Technology. He has also obtained his Piano Diploma in 2003 with Professor Dimitris Toufexis. In parallel, he has obtained the Diplomas in Harmony, Counterpoint and Fugue respectively. At the moment he is a PhD student in acousmatic music (submission period) at the University of Manchester (NOVARS Research Centre), under the supervision of Professor David Berezan. His area of interest is: Creating works of acousmatic music based on aspects of Greek Culture (Religion, Traditional Greek Instruments, Mythology). His works have been performed in MANTIS Festival of Electroacoustic Music (Manchester, UK), MA/IN Matera Intermedia Festival (Matera, Italy), MISE-EN_Place Electroacoustic Music Festival in Bushwick Studios, Brooklyn (New York City, USA), Ecos Urbanos Electroacoustic Music Festival (Mexico City, Mexico) and EASTN-DC: European Art-Science-Technology Network for Digital Creativity (Manchester, UK).

Nullius in Verba by Robert Scott Thompson (runner up)

Nullius in Verba translates from the Latin as “on the word of no one.” This acousmatic composition incorporates field and studio recordings and their transformation and elaboration. Sound sources include vocal, percussion, flute and ‘cello sources together with mechanical and environmental sounds. The music is conceived as a kind of “song without words,” and in working on it, I was reminded of Mendelssohn: “What the music I love expresses to me, is not thought too indefinite to be put into words, but on the contrary, too definite.” Techniques used for the work include ambisonic spatialization and spectral transformation methods. Tools used include Kyma, Csound, Metasynth, Cecelia, Trajectory and Spat Revolution.

Robert Scott Thompson is a composer of instrumental and electroacoustic music and is Professor of Music Composition at Georgia State University in Atlanta. He is the recipient of several prizes and distinctions for his music including the First Prize in the 2003 Musica Nova Competition, the First Prize in the 2001 Pierre Schaeffer Competition, and awards in the Concorso Internazionale “Luigi Russolo”, Irino Prize Foundation Competition for Chamber Music, and Concours International de Musique Electroacoustique de Bourges – including the Commande Commission 2007. His work has been presented in festivals such as the Koriyama Bienalle, Helsinki Bienalle, Sound, Présences, Synthèse, Sonorities, ICMC, SEAMUS and the Cabrillo Music Festival, and broadcast on Radio France, BBC, NHK, ABC, WDR, and NPR. His music is published on numerous solo recordings and compilations by EMF Media, Neuma, Drimala, Capstone, Hypnos, Oasis/Mirage, Groove, Lens, Space for Music, Zero Music, Twelfth Root, Relaxed Machinery and Aucourant record labels, among others.

Thompson’s work in the area of computer music is oriented toward high modernism in the tradition of the founders and pioneers of the field such as Pierre Schaeffer, Stockhausen, and Xenakis. His music is also informed by the naturalistic soundscape and importantly notions of contemporary expressions in chamber and orchestral music. Thompson’s aesthetics attempts to blend and meld the real and imaginary into a musical context that invites deep listening and engagement in the listener. The music – the tonality, sonority, transformation of materials – is the primary focus rather than the outworking of a specific technique or technology. In recent years Thompson has become an adherent of the techniques of ambisonic spatialization and increasingly creates work that is based in this approach to both multi- channel and stereophonic presentation.