The New Music Biennial’s first showcase weekend runs at London’s Southbank Centre this weekend, 4-6 July, with free tickets available to all events.
The biennial has led to the commissioning of 20 new works, most of which will be performed over the course of the weekend having received their premieres at performances across England and Scotland earlier this year.
Yann Seznec’s Currents will have its world premiere at the Purcell Room on 5 July. The work involves hundreds of fans, controlled by real-time weather data and wind conditions in South Africa, New Zealand, England, Canada and India.
Pulse, a short film by Ruth Paxton with music by Dobrinka Tabakova, will be projected onto the side of the Royal Festival Hall at 9.30pm, 10pm and 10.30pm on 4 & 5 July, and shown in a screening at the Queen Elizabeth Hall at 4pm on 6 July.
Samuel Bordoli’s Grind will involve skaters and the Roundhouse Choir ‘using the unique acoustic of skate parks in London, Aberdeen and Glasgow’, performed at 6pm on 5 July. Until recently the skatepark in the undercroft of the Queen Elizabeth Hall was threatened by the Southbank’s plans for redevelopment.
Arlene Sierra’s Urban Birds for three pianos, electronics, birdsong and percussion will be performed by Sarah Nicholls, Xenia Pestova, and Kathleen Supové at the Queen Elizabeth Hall at noon on 5 July.
A composing project, Love Songs You Compose, will run over the course of the weekend, initiated with a workshop run by Luke Styles at 10am and repeated at 11am on 5 July. There will be a dedicated composing space open, ‘although, ‘available resources will be limited’, with a deadline of 3.30pm on 6 July for works to be put forward for the weekend’s closing performance, when the Juice vocal ensemble will perform ‘some of the best submissions’.
A second showcase weekend will take place at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on 1 & 2 August.