New Music 20x12

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WELCOME to New Music 20x12, a Cultural Olympiad programme which celebrates the talent and imagination of UK composers and organisations who are working together to create new music. Over the next 12 months, New Music 20x12 brings you 20 brand new pieces of music, each lasting 12 minutes, which you’ll be able to enjoy in a wide range of venues and unexpected locations across the length and breadth of the UK – from churches, arts centres and concert halls to public spaces, festivals and a train journey. We’re delighted that BBC Radio 3 will also broadcast each New Music 20x12 piece and you’ll be able to buy downloads of the music from NMC Recordings at The commissions encompass an exciting range of composers and music genres and offer a snapshot of the UK’s rich musical life -from jazz, folk and music for brass band to contemporary classical, chamber opera and music written for dance. Each piece takes its inspiration from the spirit of the Olympic and Paralympic Games – endeavour, celebration, achievement and collaboration – and invites you to take part in a once in a lifetime celebration of new music. This programme gives you details of some of the live performances you can attend across the UK in 2012, the weekend celebration of New Music 20x12 at Southbank Centre London from 13-15 July and the broadcasts of New Music 20x12 on BBC Radio 3. To follow updates and to buy tickets please see New Music 20x12 is the brainchild of Jillian Barker and David Cohen who wanted to put new music at the heart of the Olympic celebrations in 2012. It is delivered by PRS for Music Foundation in partnership with BBC Radio 3, LOCOG, NMC Recordings and a wide range of generous funders who have joined us to support these outstanding commissions which will contribute to the cultural legacy of London 2012. We hope you will join us at one of the performances near you! Vanessa Reed Executive Director PRS for Music Foundation

Central Council of Church Bell Ringers and Third Ear present

‘Five Rings Triples’ by Howard Skempton 31 Dec KINGSTON UPON THAMES, LONDON – All Saints Church 6 May BIRMINGHAM – @AE Harris 8 & 23 Jun LONDON – Spitalfields Summer Music Festival This piece for church bells, commissioned by the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers and Third Ear, marks the Olympic year’s beginning. Skempton believes that bells proclaim moments of public gathering, celebration and important news, providing an ideal medium for the launch of New Music 20x12. Special thanks to RVW Trust for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,,

National Youth Orchestra presents

‘HandsFree’ by Anna Meredith 5 Jan LIVERPOOL – Liverpool Philharmonic Hall 6 Jan LONDON – Barbican and more performances tbc at Sage Gateshead and Birmingham ‘HandsFree’ enables NYO’s young musicians, from all over Britain, to share their musicianship and creative inventiveness without their instruments, through clapping, body percussion and beatboxing. Special thanks to the Musicians Benevolent Fund for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,,,


Irene Taylor Trust presents

‘Beyond This’ by Mark-Anthony Turnage 19 Jan NOTTINGHAM – HM Prison Lowdham Grange 5 Jul LONDON – St. Marylebone Church

© Philip Gatward

Composer Mark-Anthony Turnage partners with the Irene Taylor Trust ‘Music in Prisons’ and some new composers, comprising a group of prisoners from HMP Lowdham Grange. ‘Beyond This’ presents music as a powerful vehicle for change, and enables prisoners to contribute positively to New Music 20x12.

Black Dyke Band presents

‘Pure Gold: a 4x4 Relay Race’ by Luke Carver Goss 27 Jan MANCHESTER – Royal Northern College of Music Composer Luke Carver Goss was commissioned by the award-winning Black Dyke Band to write a piece which uses the structure of a relay race. ‘Pure Gold: a 4x4 Relay Race’ is divided into four three minute 'legs' - power, speed, losing ground and finally, triumph, and tells the tale of success through team work and sporting pride with poet Ian McMillan and the Manchester Chorale.,,


Chinatown Arts Space presents

‘XX/XY’ by Liz Liew and Andy Leung 29 Jan LONDON – Trafalgar Square The Chinese New Year celebrations will herald in the Year of the Dragon and with it the dramatic unveiling of ‘XX/XY’ – an East meets West fusion of new music. The work is inspired by the competition of life – from the battle of the sexes (female XX/male XY chromosomes) to the competitive spirit of the Olympics and Paralympics.

The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment presents

‘Spinal Chords’ by Sally Beamish 5 Feb SOUTHAMPTON – Turner Sims 10 Feb LONDON – Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre ‘Spinal Chords’ is a piece of music set to a text written by Melanie Reid, a columnist for The Times who broke her neck and back following a horse-riding accident earlier in 2010. The piece reflects the positive spirit of Melanie and the many other people, including Paralympians, who display such a life-affirming attitude in the face of adversity.,,,


Wonderbrass presents

‘Skip, Dash, Flow’ by Jason Yarde 21 Feb 23 Jun 6 Jul 21 Jul

CARDIFF – Globe Cardiff LICHFIELD – Real Ale Jazz and Blues Festival PEMBROKESHIRE – Druidstone Jamboree CARDIFF – The Welsh Proms, St Davids Hall

Composer, producer and saxophonist Jason Yarde and community band Wonderbrass, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2012, will perform the composition ‘Skip, Dash, Flow’ that explores new world rhythms. Special thanks to Arts Council of Wales for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,

The Rambert Dance Company presents © Blackcherry Photography

‘What Wild Ecstasy’ by Gavin Higgins 15 – 17 Feb ABERDEEN – His Majesty’s Theatre 15 – 19 May LONDON – Sadler’s Wells Rambert Dance Company is reviving Rambert’s version of Nijinsky’s ballet L'Après-midi d'un Faune in its centenary year, alongside the world premiere of ‘What Wild Ecstasy’. Choreographed by Mark Baldwin, this new work, by Rambert’s inaugural Music Fellow Gavin Higgins, is a contemporary response to Debussy’s ground-breaking music, taking the original harmonic palette as its starting point. Special thanks to The Bliss Trust and the Finzi Trust for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,,,


The Coull String Quartet presents

‘Ping!’ by Joe Cutler 3 Mar WARWICK – Warwick Arts Centre 6 May BIRMINGHAM – @AE Harris 16 Jun BROMLEY – Fusion Table Tennis Club ‘Ping!’ is a collaboration between composer Joe Cutler, the Coull String Quartet and Fusion table tennis club and explores the distinct sounds and rhythms that table tennis players create. The piece builds from intricate cross-rhythms between table tennis players, a string quartet and a soundtrack.,,

The London Chamber Orchestra presents

‘Track to Track’ by Graham Fitkin 22 Mar LONDON – Cadogan Hall Jun/Jul LONDON – St Pancras Station Inspired by Benjamin Britten and WH Auden’s ‘Nightmail,’ ‘Track to Track’ celebrates the journey of the Olympic Javelin Train taking passengers from St. Pancras Station to Stratford and back during the Olympics. Original motifs for the work have been prepared by children working in LCO’s and Barnardo’s Music Junction partnership. ‘Track to Track’, composed for ensemble and string orchestra, is set to a text by poet Glyn Maxwell and can be heard by train commuters as much as audiences in the concert hall.,, www.


Stan’s Cafe presents

‘The Voyage’ by Michael Wolters 6 May BIRMINGHAM – @AE Harris ‘The Voyage’ is a collaboration between the composer Michael Wolters and theatre company Stan’s Cafe. The piece focuses on a mythological hero who leaves home, travels overseas to face trials and so may return a hero.,

The Imagined Village presents

‘Bending The Dark’ by Sheema Mukherjee 17 May BRIDPORT – Electric Palace Followed by UK tour taking in Liverpool Philharmonic, Bury St Edmunds Festival, Birmingham Town Hall, Norfolk and Norwich festival, ABC Glasgow O2 Academy, Oxford O2 Academy, Cheltenham Town Hall, Hay Festival, Sage Gateshead, Bridgewater Hall Manchester, York Barbican and Arlington Arts Centre Composer Sheema Mukherjee's piece 'Bending The Dark' has been written from the point of view of a second-generation immigrant tracing the path of the Indian diaspora across continents. It is performed by The Imagined Village, a band that unites some of England's finest traditional musicians alongside leading figures on the UK Asian and alternative, electronica music scene.,,


The Opera Group and Salisbury Arts Festival present

‘Fire’ by David Bruce 26 May 27 May 23 Jun

SALISBURY – Salisbury International Arts Festival BRIGHTON – Brighton Festival LONDON – Spitalfields Music Summer Festival

The Opera Group and Salisbury International Arts Festival have commissioned David Bruce to create ‘Fire’, an outdoor spectacle of visual and musical fireworks. The celebratory piece is performed by fire artists, an ensemble of horns and a community chorus recruited through each of the three festivals to which it tours.,,,

An Tobar presents

‘TAT-1’ by Aidan O’Rourke TOBERMORY – An Tobar, The Tobermory Arts Centre

Fiddler and composer Aidan O’Rourke and An Tobar, The Tobermory Arts Centre, have created ‘TAT-1’, inspired by the first transatlantic telephone cable which ran from Aidan’s hometown Oban, on the west coast of Scotland, to Newfoundland. As the Olympics brings the world closer together, the cable had the same purpose and for many years carried the “hotline” between Washington and Moscow.

© Craig MacKay CMG

8 Jun

Special thanks to Creative Scotland for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,


Second Movement presents

‘Zatopek!’ by Emily Howard 15 Jun LIVERPOOL – Contemporary Urban Centre more dates tbc

© Kieran Morris, De Novo Arts

‘Zatopek!’ is a chamber opera inspired by legendary Czech Olympian Emil Zatopek (1922-2000). In 1954 Zatopek set a new world record for the 5000m running the distance in 13.57 minutes. This piece has just a little less time to celebrate his life and times from the starting pistol of his international breakthrough at the London 1948 Olympics to the final finish line. Special thanks to Jerwood Charitable Foundation for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,,

Drake Music Scotland presents

‘Technophonia’ by Oliver Searle 15 Jun EDINBURGH – The Queen’s Hall 22 Jun GLASGOW – Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Opera Studio ‘Technophonia’ will bring together cutting edge music interfaces used by Drake Music Scotland, the nation’s leading arts organisation providing music making opportunities for people with disabilities. Oliver Searle’s music inspires young musicians to combine their individual talents to achieve a unique team performance, challenging how the audience defines musical instruments and performing musicians. Special thanks to Creative Scotland for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.


HMDT presents

‘The Brown Bomber’ by Julian Joseph 20 / 21 Jun LONDON – Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadlers Wells Based on the famous ringside battle between African American boxer Joe Louis and German boxer Max Schmeling in 1938, ‘The Brown Bomber’ brings to life the relationship between two athletes, once adversaries in sport who became friends despite the ideological opposition surrounding them. Choreographed by Sheron Wray, the Dance Suite is performed by young dancers and the Julian Joseph Quintet.,,

NI Opera presents

‘Our Day’ by Conor Mitchell 28-30 Jun BELFAST – The MAC ‘Our Day’ is a new opera set against a backdrop of events in Northern Ireland in 1972, which was one of the bloodiest years of the troubles. It was also the year that local girl Mary Peters won a gold medal at the Munich Olympics, an event that briefly unified a country at war. In 2012 it is 40 years since that win, and composer Conor Mitchell and NI Opera have produced a piece to remember that sense of national pride Northern Ireland had in 1972. Special thanks to Arts Council of Northern Ireland for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,


EXAUDI presents

‘New Work’ by Aaron Cassidy 13 – 15 Jul LONDON – Southbank Centre EXAUDI, one of Britain’s leading contemporary music ensembles, has worked with Aaron Cassidy to generate new sounds for the human voice by exploring experimental approaches to vocal production. The Olympic idea of pushing the body to physical (and mental, and spiritual) extremes lies at the heart of Cassidy’s conception for this work.,,

European Union Youth Orchestra presents © Katie Vandyck

‘Twenty-Seven Heavens’ by Richard Causton 23 Aug EDINBURGH – Usher Hall ‘Twenty-Seven Heavens’ explores Blake’s Jerusalem where the poet parallels aspects of his mythological world with various districts of London, including areas such as Hackney, Bow and Stratford. The twenty-seven heavens are layers of obscurity that the individual must penetrate to see the vision of Eternity – an idea which has resonance for both the artist and the athlete. Special thanks to RVW Trust for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible.,


New Music 20x12 Weekend Celebration 13 – 15 Jul LONDON – Southbank Centre This event will offer you a chance to experience all of the New Music 20x12 pieces in more depth, to meet the composers and organisations they are collaborating with and to get involved in workshops and seminars which explore the art of creating music. Visit for programme updates and to buy tickets for this exciting event. Special thanks to Arts Council England, Creative Scotland and Columbia Foundation Fund of the Capital Community Foundation, for making this New Music 20x12 weekend possible.

“As a principal funder of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, it’s fantastic to see our investment contribute to such a wide-ranging project that brings extraordinary music to audiences right across the UK. The range of musical talent, not to mention venues, that has come together like never before to celebrate 2012, will leave a powerful legacy for music long beyond the Games.” Alan Davey, Chief Executive of Arts Council England


Diary Date

31 Dec 5 Jan



Central Council of Church Bell Ringers: All Saints Church, Howard Skempton – ‘Five Rings Triples’ KINGSTON UPON THAMES National Youth Orchestra: Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, Anna Meredith – ‘Hands Free’ LIVERPOOL

6 Jan

National Youth Orchestra: Barbican, LONDON Anna Meredith – ‘Hands Free’

19 Jan 27 Jan

Irene Taylor Trust/Music in Prisons: HM Prison Lowdham Grange, Mark-Anthony Turnage – ‘Beyond This’ NOTTINGHAM

29 Jan

Chinatown Arts Space: Trafalgar Square, LONDON Liz Liew and Andy Leung – ‘XX/XY’

5 Feb

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment: Turner Sims, SOUTHAMPTON Sally Beamish – ‘Spinal Chords’

10 Feb

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment: Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Sally Beamish – ‘Spinal Chords’ Centre, LONDON

Black Dyke Band: Royal Northern College of Music, Luke Carver Goss – ‘Pure Gold: MANCHESTER a 4x4 Relay Race’

15/17 Feb Rambert Dance Company: His Majesty’s Theatre, ABERDEEN Gavin Higgins – ‘What Wild Ecstasy’ 21 Feb Wonderbrass: Globe, CARDIFF Jason Yarde – ‘Skip, Dash, Flow’ 3 Mar

Coull String Quartet: Warwick Arts Centre, WARWICK Joe Cutler – ‘Ping!’


22 Mar 6 May



London Chamber Orchestra: Cadogan Hall, LONDON Graham Fitkin – ‘Track to Track’ Coull String Quartet: Joe Cutler – ‘Ping!’


6 May

Stan’s Café: Michael Wolter – ‘The Voyage’


6 May

Central Council of Church Bell Ringers: @AE Harris, BIRMINGHAM Howard Skempton – ‘Five Rings Triples’

15/19 May Rambert Dance Company: Sadler’s Wells, LONDON Gavin Higgins – ‘What Wild Ecstasy’ 17 May

The Imagined Village: Electric Palace, BRIDPORT Sheema Mukherjee – ‘Bending the Dark’

26 May

The Opera Group: Salisbury International Arts Festival, David Bruce – ‘Fire’ SALISBURY

27 May

The Opera Group: David Bruce – ‘Fire’

Brighton Festival, BRIGHTON

tbc Jun

London Chamber Orchestra: Graham Fitkin’ – ‘Track to Track’

St Pancras Station, LONDON

8 Jun

An Tobar, The Tobermory Arts Centre: An Tobar, The Tobermory Arts Centre, Aidan O’Rourke – ‘TAT-1’ TOBERMORY

8 Jun 15 Jun

Central Council of Church Bell Ringers: Spitalfields Music Summer Festival, Howard Skempton – ‘Five Rings Triples’ LONDON

15 Jun

Drake Music Scotland: The Queen’s Hall, EDINBURGH Oliver Searle – ‘Technophonia’

Second Movement: Contemporary Urban Centre, Emily Howard – ‘Zatopek!’ LIVERPOOL



16 Jun


Coull String Quartet: Fusion Table Tennis Club, BROMLEY Joe Cutler – ‘Ping!’

20/21 Jun HMDT: Lilian Baylis Studio, Sadlers Wells, Julian Joseph – ‘The Brown Bomber’ LONDON 22 Jun HMDT: York Hall, LONDON (tbc) Julian Joseph – ‘The Brown Bomber’ 22 Jun 23 Jun

Drake Music Scotland: Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Oliver Searle – ‘Technophonia’ Opera Studio, GLASGOW

23 Jun

The Opera Group: Spitalfields Music Summer Festival, David Bruce – ‘Fire’ LONDON

Central Council of Church Bell Ringers: Spitalfields Music Summer Festival, Howard Skempton – ‘Five Rings Triples’ LONDON

23 Jun Wonderbrass: Real Ale Jazz and Blues Festival, Jason Yarde – ‘Skip, Dash, Flow’ LICHFIELD 28/30 Jun NI Opera: The MAC, BELFAST Conor Mitchell – ‘Our Day’ 5 Jul

Irene Taylor Trust/Music in Prisons: Mark-Anthony Turnage – ‘Beyond This’

St. Marylebone Church, LONDON

6 Jul Wonderbrass: Druidstone Jamboree, Jason Yarde – ‘Skip, Dash, Flow’ PEMBROKESHIRE 13–15 Jul NEW MUSIC 20X12 Southbank Centre, LONDON Weekend Celebration 21 Jul Wonderbrass: The Welsh Proms, St Davids Hall, Jason Yarde – ‘Skip, Dash, Flow’ CARDIFF 23 Aug

European Union Youth Orchestra: Usher Hall, EDINBURGH Richard Causton – ‘Twenty Seven Heavens’

Listen again Each New Music 20x12 piece will be recorded for exclusive broadcast on Radio 3’s Hear & Now programme, with ‘Five Rings Triples’ by Howard Skempton ringing us in to 2012 after the chimes of Big Ben on New Year’s Day. Tune in to Radio 3's Hear & Now on the following dates and to BBC iPlayer for 1 week after: 21 Apr – 'Hands Free', 'Pure Gold: a 4x4 Relay Race' and 'Spinal Chords' 19 May – 'Skip, Dash, Flow', 'Track to Track' and 'Ping!' 16 Jun – 'The Voyage', 'Fire' and 'Zatopek!' 21 Jul – 'TAT-1', 'Technophonia' and 'Our Day' 18 Aug – 'Beyond This', 'XX/XY', 'EXAUDI & Aaron Cassidy', 'The Brown Bomber' and 'What Wild Ecstasy' 25 Aug – 'Bending The Dark', 'Twenty Seven Heavens' “The BBC is proud to be a key partner in the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad. Projects such as New Music 20x12 showcase the exceptional talent and creativity of the UK’s musical community, and we’re delighted to be able to support them on BBC Radio 3.” Roger Wright, Controller of BBC Radio 3

NMC Recordings will be releasing recordings of each New Music 20x12 piece after it has been broadcast by BBC Radio 3. Go to for release dates and to buy the downloads, which will be available in both MP3 and FLAC formats. All information about New Music 20x12 events are correct at time of printing, but may be subject to change. For the latest event information go to

Thank you We would like to thank all of the funding bodies and individuals who have generously supported New Music 20x12:

The Bliss Trust John S. Cohen Foundation / Columbia Foundation Fund of the Capital Community Foundation / Charlotte and Dennis Stevenson / The Tolkien Trust / John and Ann Tusa / Lilian Slowe / John Wates Charitable Trust / Richard Walduck / Honeymead Arts Trust and Sir Anthony Cleaver. And our partners who have made this programme possible: logo enlarge version2

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“Two years on from our first discussions about New Music 20x12, it’s fantastic that our dream of putting new music centre stage of the Cultural Olympiad has become a reality. We’re delighted that such an impressive range of organisations, composers and funding partners have come together to make this happen and we are extremely grateful for their support .” Jillian Barker, founding patron. Credits: Programme Director: Vanessa Reed (PRS for Music Foundation). Steering Group: Jillian Barker, Susannah Simons (BBC), Sarah Goodfellow (LOCOG), Andrew Kurowski and Philip Tagney (BBC Radio 3). Communications: Sarah Thirtle (PRSF) PR: Talia Hull (Little Desk PR)