Kate Ellis performing ‘In your own time’

Here’s a video of Kate Ellis performing In your own time at the Music and Media Technologies Show in May 2012. Kate did a really great job of turning a collection of ideas I came to the rehearsals with into something really wonderful. It was a real pleasure to hear what we had worked on come alive on the night.

Kate Ellis

Cellist Kate Ellis is a versatile musician dedicated to the performance and exploration of all new music. With an interest in the use of electronics, Kate has commissioned and premiered works by numerous Irish and International composers and has toured and broadcast in Australia, the USA, Europe and China. Kate has performed with Bobby McFerrin, Iarla O Lionaird, Gavin Friday and Karan Casey and plays regularly with Tarab, Yurodny and the Ergodos Musicians.

West Cork Chamber Music Festival String Quartet Workshop

I’m just home from the convolutedly titled West Cork Chamber Music Festival String Quartet Workshop, a workshop of string quartets in progress with 5 other composers. Our venue for the day was the jaw droppingly beautiful Cork School of Music, full of cavernous hallways and generously proportioned rooms and most importantly very reasonably tasting coffee. We were also luck enough to have the company of the RTÉ Vanbrugh Quartet to play through our pieces, with the composer Deirdre Gribbin leading the workshop.

The workshop opened with Vanbrugh playing through examples from Beethoven, Britten and Janáček with Deirdre point out important features of the music and talking us through how these ideas could be applied when writing for the quartet. Pulling out phrases from different pieces and having them played using different string techniques, such as sul pont, as harmonics or pizzicato, showed the variety of sounds that can be achieved and how these sounds can be combined to create interesting textures. Read more