tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:/posts Women in Music UK Blog 2019-12-07T19:27:02Z WiM tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1486445 2019-12-07T19:27:02Z 2019-12-07T19:27:02Z Composer Sally Currie is a winner of the Emergent Commissions for Disabled Musicians 2019/20

'Winners announced for national 2019/20 Emergent Commissions for Disabled Musicians 

Three emerging Disabled musicians have been awarded national commissions by Drake Music and its partner, Sound and Music. The winners of the 2019/20 Emergent commissions - Dyr Sister, Robbie Ashworth and Remi Fox-Novak - will create new work which brings together music and film, responding to the question: “What does it mean to be you and living in today’s society?”.

The composers, from Nottingham, London and Hull, come from very different musical backgrounds, including contemporary folk music, underground techno and composition for moving image.

The commissions aim to support emerging Disabled musicians to take the next step in their musical and career development, offering a supported opportunity to create new work and push their practice further.

The two organisations are working in partnership to raise the profile of Disabled composers within the UK contemporary music scene. As well as partnering each musician with a film-maker, the organisations will support them to become part of the British Music Collection, an online space and discovery platform for new music and creators in the UK.

Carien Meijer, Chief Executive of Drake Music, commented:

“This is the third year of our Emergent commission programme and it is wonderful to see the quality of the musicians coming through. 

"Disabled people are massively under-represented in the UK music scene, so it is exciting to be working in partnership with Sound and Music to bring these talented musicians to a whole new audience.”


The three Emergent Commission winners are:

Dyr Sister (Hull)

Sally Currie is a Multi-Instrumentalist based in Hull who is partially deaf and has an extensive history writing and performing music with bands and solo. Her main instruments are the Viola and the Piano which she learnt as a child, subsequently playing in local orchestras and string ensembles. As a solo artist she has performed her work all over the UK at venues and festivals sharing bills with acts like Laetitia Sadier, This is the Kit, Ruth Theodore, Thomas Truax and The Dead Rat Orchestra.

Sally’s current project is The Dyr Sister, a contemporary folk band which expands on her previous solo work and is described as ‘Fairy tales for the Modern Gentleman’.

Sally says:

“I am very excited as a deaf artist about turning my music into visual art and all the different possibilities that this entails. Being able to add another dimension to the presentation of my work that is accessible to the deaf community is something that means a lot to me and I feel privileged to be able to join the programme and explore this.”


Robbie Ashworth

A composer, performer and entertainer from South West London. His main instrument is piano but he also enjoys playing guitar and African djembe drums. He has a music degree from Kingston University and an HND from North East Scotland College. His favourite genres are jazz, blues and 1950s rock and roll but has also been classically trained to Grade 8 (piano).

“I am thrilled to be able to compose a piece of music set to a moving image which highlights how inclusion is still in its infancy with regards to people with hidden disabilities as well as visual ones. I would like my music to show how living in today’s society can be an isolating experience for those who are different.”


Remi Fox-Novak

Emerging from the Nottingham underground, Remi Fox-Novák is a producer, live performer and sound artist as a member of the Surfacing collective. This summer he released his first solo record ‘+’ and has begun performing his angular brand of dancefloor techno live.  A self-confessed music technology nerd, he is passionate about finding ways to make playing music accessible for all.

Remi adds:

“I am so pleased to be working with Drake Music. It’s a great opportunity to push my sound design skills in partnership with film makers and make connections with other artists.”


The Emergent: A Music Legacy programme is funded by Help Musicians UK to support new artistic and career opportunities for Disabled musicians and composers.

Drake Music brought the three artists together for a collaborative and exploratory music making session in November and they are now working on their commissions individually. In early 2020 they will be matched with film-makers, ready to release the new work in spring.'

Source: Drake Music https://www.drakemusic.org/blog/becky-morris-knight/emergent-commission-winners-2019-20-announced/

tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1485788 2019-12-05T21:23:23Z 2019-12-05T21:23:24Z Congratulations to women composer winners in this year's Ivors Composer Awards

Women composers have been hugely successful in this year's Ivors Composer Awards, with winners in six categories and a lifetime achivement award. Huge congratulations to Charlotte Harding, Anna Meredith, Laura Jurd, Alison Rayner, Erika Fox, Charlotte Bray and Hilda Paredes.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1485786 2019-12-05T21:00:11Z 2019-12-05T21:00:12Z 22nd London New Wind Festival Improvised Scores at Schott's, Friday December 13th, 7.30 pm

tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1485536 2019-12-04T22:38:53Z 2019-12-04T22:38:53Z Raising funds for 1st gender balanced show The Daffodil Perspective

The Daffodil Perspective is raising funds to help continue their work championing women and creating diversity in classical music. If you've enjoyed the show and their work please consider donating.

More information on the GoFundMe campaign here

tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1485196 2019-12-03T19:41:30Z 2019-12-03T19:41:30Z Music intertwining women from past and present, from Asia and Europe - a concert of memory and hope, 24 January 2020

Multi-instrumentalist and composer Rachel Beckles Willson brings her quartet Beyond Mode to London, animating a unique soundworld of voice, oud, bowed tanbur and double-bass interwoven with Indian tabla. The programme combines music by a female musician at the Ottoman court in 18th-century Istanbul, Dilhayat Kalfa, and newly-written instrumental pieces, songs and extemporisations for this unique quartet.

At the heart of the programme is Beckles Willson's Sing no Sad Songs for Me, the composition that launched the ensemble, exploring the poetry of Christina Rossetti, child of Italian exiles in 19th-century London. Sing no Sad Songs for Me expresses the mysteriousness and poignancy of parting in death, while bringing together in music the spaces of Europe and Asia all too often held apart.

Beyond Mode emerged from musical encounters at Labyrinth Musical Workshops, Crete. Rachel Beckles Willson is a composer, multi-instrumentalist and researcher, Professorial Research Associate at SOAS, University of London. Her work is dedicated to seeking out and amplifying unheard voices - often those of women, often those of people on-the-move.

Evgenios Voulgaris is one of Europe’s leading multi-instrumentalists in traditional repertoires of the Mediterranean, and a leading exponent of the yayli tanbur, the bowed long-necked lute of Turkey. Ciro Montanari has emerged as one of the most significant European tabla players and is currently based in Barcelona, while Kostas Tsaroukis is increasingly in demand as oud-player and double-bassist in Greece and internationally, while working mainly Athens.

Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/soas-concert-series-beyond-mode-tickets-83698828449?fbclid=IwAR2EWn1A-Fr4Abd-ikW1HUR3ZTvZ6-fVlAcMMESzalCYhKP91tdpOONlkC0

£4 online booking required to guarantee seat allocation.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1476804 2019-11-12T16:07:39Z 2019-11-12T16:07:39Z And The Stats Are out! - 1 year Analysis of gender balanced classical music show The Daffodil Perspective

1 year, 42 shows, 55 hours of music. How did it go?

409 composers including 204 female composers, 155 living composers and 40 BAME composers/composers of colour.

33 hours of music by women composers, 13 hours of music by living women composers, 6.75 hours of music by BAME composers/composers of colour

584 pieces including 339 by female composers.

14 pieces per week on average including 8 by women, 3 by living composers and from May onwards every show had at least 1 piece by a BAME compose/composer of colour.

Most Played Composer: Florence Price (14 times)

Mozart was played twice, Bach twice and Beethoven once.

See the full infographic report here: 


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1475311 2019-11-08T21:34:19Z 2019-11-08T21:34:19Z The Daffodil Perspective 1st Birthday Show!

The Daffodil Perspective is now 1 year old!

Celebrate 1 year of championing gender equality in classical music with this special birthday show, featuring a special selection of some favourite pieces from throughout the year.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1472971 2019-11-02T07:37:21Z 2019-11-02T07:37:22Z Gender balanced classical music show The Daffodil Perspective

This week discussing the work and music of visionary composer Wendy Carlos and a very exciting world premiere recording of Margaret Bond's epic cantata The Ballad of the Brown King from Malcolm J Merriweather and company.

Plus music from Elfman, Elisabeth Lutyens, Arvo Part and more!


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1470820 2019-10-27T23:22:15Z 2019-10-27T23:22:15Z Tailleferre Ensemble concert at High Wycombe TOMORROW 28 October 1.10 pm

The Tailleferre Ensemble will be playing Rhian Samuel's Redlands Suite, Cecilia McDowall's Century Dances & Claude Arrieu's Trio tomorrow at All Saint's Church, High Wycombe, 1:10pm.



tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1470814 2019-10-27T23:09:20Z 2019-10-27T23:09:21Z New database of clarinet music written by women

Women in Music has learned of an excellent new resource listing works for clarinet by women composers. The resource can be found here https://www.clarinetrepertoire.com/ 

tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1470812 2019-10-27T22:57:50Z 2019-10-27T22:57:50Z Anthology of Sacred Music by Women Composers - Multitude of Voyces, Selwyn College, Cambridge, Sun 17th November 2019

Female Composer Anthology Launch - Multitude of Voyces

Selwyn College, Cambridge, CB3 9DQ
Sun 17th November 2019 5:00PM

This event marks the launch of the groundbreaking anthology of liturgical choral music by female composers spearheaded by Multitude of Voyces.  

The day comprises:
3pm rehearsal - open for observers
5pm - reception
6pm - choral evensong
7pm - drinks and dinner
8.30pm - concert

Women's Sacred Music has historically been underrepresented within the Anglican liturgy. Multitude of Voyces C.I.C. has been supporting women's sacred music compositions for several years and this anthology includes several commissions as well as selected historical works, recommended works by established composers and submissions by emerging composers. Each of the three volumes contains centuries of women's sacred music composition and each includes established historical and living composers from several countries, as well as emerging young composers.

tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1470132 2019-10-25T19:29:25Z 2019-10-25T19:29:25Z Gender balanced classical radio show The Daffodil Perspective

It's the last ever Fun With Florence feature this week, wrapping up a year of celebrating the incredible music of Florence Price.

In honour of Black History Month UK there some special surprises as well.

Plus music from conductor Mei-Ann Chen, badass brass from composer Lucy Pankhurst and exciting new albums from Annabelle Berthomé-Reynolds and Gillian Smith.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1468239 2019-10-20T21:08:09Z 2019-10-20T21:08:09Z Mental Health In The Music Industry: A Guide, by Rachel Jepson

Rachel Jepson's new book, Mental Health In The Music Industry: A Guide will be of interest to women working in the music industry. Rachel is a musician and counsellor with more than twenty years experience in the music industry who has presented her work to the ISM and Help Musicians UK amongst others.

Rachel says

There are many issues affecting the mental health of women in the music industry. I write about some of these issues in my new book ‘Mental Health in The Music Industry: A Guide’. To begin with, there is a major gender imbalance within the music industry in terms of senior management. According to a survey by UK Music, only 30% of senior positions in the music industry are occupied by women. Why is this? It could be a lack of encouragement, self-esteem, confidence and role models. There are a lack of role models and opportunities when it comes to certain music industry roles such as managers, tour managers, producers, mixers, sound engineers leading to some women not believing they will succeed if they pursue these careers. Women also have the added pressure of touring and working in the music industry whilst being a mother, feeling pressure from their orchestra, label, manager etc to tour whilst also feeling judged and guilty if they do so. It has been well-documented that some female artists have been abused, controlled and harassed whilst working in the music industry. There is a culture of: ‘’You’re lucky to be here and someone else will do it if you don’t.’’ For women in the industry, there is always a pressure to look beautiful and accept that they will be sexualised; this is not the same for men. Famous female musicians who live in the public eye are scrutinised, criticised and trolled if they have put on weight, had surgery, dyed their hair, worn the wrong dress leading to issues such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders and a distorted body image. I am not saying that some of the issues do not affect men, but they are a part of everyday life for most women in the music industry. Awareness must be raised of some of these issues, and support provided. I’m hoping this book, and my CPD accredited course in Mental Health Awareness In The Music Industry will address this.

Proceeds from the sale of the book will go to music charities.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1467794 2019-10-19T17:00:05Z 2019-10-19T17:00:06Z Gender balanced classical music radio show The Daffodil Perspective

Join me on a trip round the world this week, going down under with music from composer of the week Peggy Glanville-Hicks and friends Paul Bowles, Arthur Benjamin and Peter Sculthorpe.

A PARMA Recordings double bill this month with music from Mira Spektor and Finnish composer Maija Hynninen.

Plus Mexican music conducted by Alondra de la Parra, African music performed by Rebeca Omordia, Cuban music performed by Rachel Barton Pine and a flute concerto by Sally Beamish.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1467694 2019-10-19T11:57:00Z 2019-10-19T11:57:00Z Scordatura Women's Music Collective concert TONIGHT, Saturday 19 October, Carperby Village Hall, Wensleydale, 7.30 pm

Scordatura Women's Music Collective concert performing music by women composers.

Wensleydale Concert Series

19/10/19 7.30pm

Rebecca Clarke - Prelude, Allegro and Pastorale

Rebecca Clarke - Lullaby and Grotesque

Hildegard of Bingen - O Eterne Deus

Hilary Tann - Kilvert's Hills

Amy Bryce - The House That Man Built

Phylis Tate - Sonata for Clarinet and Cello

Carperby Village Hall, Wensleydale, 7.30 pm



tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1465148 2019-10-12T09:27:29Z 2019-10-12T09:27:29Z Gender balanced classical music radio show The Daffodil Perspective

The 1st and only gender balanced classical music radio show The Daffodil Perspective is back.

This week celebrating the work and legacy of composer, conductor and musical director Odaline de la Martinez. 

Plus new releases from Harlem Quartet, Neave Trio, and much more!


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1464982 2019-10-11T20:59:51Z 2019-10-11T20:59:51Z 22nd London New Wind Festival - 'Birthday Composers and Friends' - Monday, October 14th 7.30pm - London

 The 22nd London New Wind Festival bring us another excellent programme including new works by women composers.

Monday, October 14th
Burgh House and Hampstead Museum
New End Square
London NW3 1LT


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1464979 2019-10-11T20:49:13Z 2019-10-11T20:49:13Z Illuminate Women's Music concert TOMORROW 12 October, Birmingham 1 pm

Illuminate Women's Music are bringing a wonderful programme of music by women composers to Birmingham tomorrow lunchtime.

I highly recommend this if you can make it.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1457941 2019-09-21T19:20:14Z 2019-09-21T19:52:57Z WiM founder Odaline de la Martinez is among outstanding women in music awarded Ivors Academy Gold Badge

The Ivors Academy Gold Badge awards celebrate 'exceptional talent in the UK music industry; individuals who inspire or support creativity and the professional lives of The Ivors Academy members'.

Women in Music founder member Odaline de la Martinez, known as Chachi, the artistic director and conductor of Lontano Ensemble, is a wonderful composer and a champion of work by women composers. She is joined in receiving this award by other outstanding women in music, the music publisher Jane Dyball, the music engineer Olga FitzRoy, the jazz pianist, composer and teacher Nikki Iles, the classical pianist, teacher and promoter of contemporary music Thalia Myers, and the former CEO of the PRS and now President & CEO of New Music USA, Vanessa Reed.

Women in Music sends a huge congratulations to all the recipients.

The awards will be presented at a ceremony in London on 11 October.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1457618 2019-09-21T09:02:33Z 2019-09-21T09:02:33Z Vroni Holzmann launches her new album of piano compositions - 28 September 2019 - Edinburgh

Edinburgh composer Vroni Holzmann is hosting an event to launch her new album of piano compositions, Glow on the Horizon, with an in-house performance by various accomplished pianists.


The event will take place in Edinburgh on Saturday 28th September 2019. Numbers are limited but if you would like to attend please contact Vroni at vroniholzmann@hotmail.com


You can hear Vroni playing and speaking about her music in an interview from 2011 here https://www.theedinburghreporter.co.uk/2011/06/edinburgh-reporter-chats-vroni-holzmann/comment-page-1/

tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1456679 2019-09-18T14:12:41Z 2019-09-18T14:12:41Z 22nd London New Wind Festival - new work by women composers - Thursday 19th September, 6.30pm, Waterloo

22nd London New Wind Festival and Colleagues present

A Celebration of the Life and Work of Robert Coleridge (1955-2019)

Music for Winds. Music for Piano Solo and Experimental Pieces for Mixed Ensemble.

Thursday 19th September 

 Starts 6.30pm

The Warehouse Waterloo, 13 Theed Street, South Bank, London SE1 8ST

Music by Robert Coleridge and New Pieces by:

Tim Ambler, Avril Anderson, David Sutton-Anderson, Giorgio Coslovich, Stephen Gibson, Anthony Green, John Lewis, Michael Parsons, Catherine Pluygers,  Jane Serter and Hugh Shrapnel

Performers Include;

Members of London New Wind Ensemble: Simon Desorgher Flutes, Catherine Pluygers Oboes, Phil Edwards Clarinets, Ian Mitchell Clarinets, Henryk Sienkiewicz Horn, Glynn Williams Bassoon, Alan Tomlinson Trombone, David Sutton-Anderson Conductor and  Peter O'Hagan Piano. 

Solo Pianists: Anthony Green, John Lewis, Michael Parsons, Hugh Shrapnel, Ruth Shrapnel and  Sarah Walker

Tickets at door £10 (6 concessions)

tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1455629 2019-09-15T17:47:51Z 2019-09-15T17:47:51Z The Daffodil Perspective 13th September - Clara 200!

Happy Clara 200 everyone! Featuring the incredible Clara Schumann as composer of the week on her 200th birthday.

Also on the show brand new releases from Lontano and Odaline de la Martinez plus Eric Coates, Kate Amrine, Gershwin and tons more!


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1455072 2019-09-13T21:15:41Z 2019-09-13T21:15:41Z Laura Mvula and Elizabeth Maconchy - BBC Last Night of the Proms - Saturday 14 September 7.15 pm

Sing to the Moon by Laura Mvula and Proud Thames by Elizabeth Maconchy feature in the BBC's Last Night of the Proms.

Last Night of the Proms - Saturday 14 September 7.15 pm


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1453914 2019-09-10T19:16:52Z 2019-09-10T19:16:53Z Ailie Robertson, Stevie Wishart, world premieres, BBC Proms Wednesday 11 September 7.30 pm

The Dunedin Consort perform the world premieres of BBC commissions Chaconne by Ailie Robertson and The Last Dance? by Stevie Wishart, along with new works by Stuart MacRae and Nico Muhly. The new pieces are inspired by and performed alongside dances from Bach's Orchestral Suites.

BBC Proms Wednesday 11 September 7.30 pm

Dunedin Consort with John Butt.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1453240 2019-09-08T21:46:32Z 2019-09-08T21:46:32Z Freya Waley-Cohen's Naiad, BBC Commission, BBC Proms Monday 9 September 1pm

The Knussen Chamber Orchestra perform Naiad a new BBC Commission by Freya Waley-Cohen.

BBC Proms Monday 9 September 1pm


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1453073 2019-09-08T13:17:15Z 2019-09-08T21:46:56Z Judith Weir's 'Forest' BBC Proms tonight Sunday 8 September 7.30 pm

Judith Weir's 'Forest' is performed by the BBC Symphony Orchestra in tonight's Prom concert conducted by Sakari Oramo.

Sunday 8 September 7.30 pm.


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1452526 2019-09-06T18:16:07Z 2019-09-06T18:16:07Z The Daffodil Perspective 6th September 2019

The first gender balanced classical music show this week exploring the life and music of trailblazing composer Ruth Gipps.

Also featuring music from Gordon Jacob, Ruth Barrett, Malcolm Arnold, Segun Akinola and lots more gender balanced fun!


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1451073 2019-09-02T20:28:38Z 2019-09-02T20:28:39Z Illuminate Women's Music - guest post by Dr Angela Elizabeth Slater

Dr Angela Elizabeth Slater on continuing to shine a light on the work of women composers and performers in Illuminate Women’s Music 2019 Seasons I and II.

Illuminate Women’s Music was set up by Dr Angela Elizabeth Slater in 2017 for the promotion of music, both historical and contemporary, composed by women. Illuminate Women’s Music also supports talented female performers, giving repeat performance opportunities across the UK.

2018 was an amazing first year for Illuminate Women’s Music. To begin to readdress the gender imbalance in the UK classical music industry, Illuminate hosted a touring concert series that solely programmed music by women composers from the past and present. In 2018, Illuminate Women’s music programmed ten successful concerts across the UK that supported five emerging women composers. We also programmed historical works by Amy Beach, Morfydd Owen, Marie-Louise Simon, Clara Schumann, Hilda Jerea, Grażyna Bacewicz and Lili Boulanger.


2018 marked a wonderful year for celebrating women’s music with new organisations, projects and individuals working with unwavering dedication and passion in this area. Examples include a number of excellent resources: Archiv Frau und Musik, Composer Diversity Database, Music Theory Examples by Women (MTEW), International Alliance for Women in Music (IAWM), The Daffodil perspective (a radio show dedicated to women composers), A Modern Reveal, Salon Without Boundaries and Illuminate Women’s own blog series as well to name a few. There are also lots of wonderful festivals and organisations that have recently been established including Lili Boulanger Initiative, Scordatura, Sounding the Feminists and - new to 2019 - Cambridge Women’s Festival, to name but a few.

2019 will also see Kings Place’s new award-winning flagship series focusing on the creative firepower of women composers: Venus Unwrapped. Across twelve months and more than sixty events, this series will explore the history of music by women, beginning with medieval nuns and moving through to modern times. This series of concerts be a hugely welcome addition to the mission of bringing women composers to light.

2018 also saw many festivals across the world sign up to the PRS Keychange Initiative for 50/50 gender balance in programming by 2022. Subscribers include significant festivals in the UK, such as BBC Proms, Cheltenham Music Festival, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Spitalfields Music, and many more.

Evidence of these developments can be found in the Women in Music survey, which shows positive change in BBC proms 2018 programming. In 2017 women composers only constituted 7.5% of all composers programmed, whereas in 2018 saw this number rose to 14%. Representation of women composers in the living composers category rose from 22% to 40%, as did BBC Proms commissions of female composers which grew from 30.8% in 2017 to 63% in 2018. This is a huge shift that demonstrates a good statement of intent which will hopefully bring about real and substantive change in future programming.

However, surveys of 2018 programming were not universally positive. Bachtrack’s annual survey showed that only 17% of the contemporary music performed in UK concert halls in 2018 were by women composers, compared to Sweden that had 37%. Figures in other countries aren’t much better with 16% in the US and as low as 5% in both France and Germany. Statistics compiled by Donne Women in Music Project show that across a sample of leading orchestras and concert series, only 76 classical concerts out of 1,445 performed across the world from 2018 to 2019 include at least one piece by a woman.  These figures also show a total of 3,524 musical works will be performed at those concerts, and, of those, 3,442 (97.6%) were written by men and only 82 (2.3%) were written by women.  The figure amounts to about 95% of concerts having music composed by men only. These examples demonstrate how important it is to keep this issue at the forefront of the minds of musicians, programmers, festivals and music organisations.

During 2018, the centenary year of women’s suffrage, the issue of women composers in concert programmes has been a particularly hot topic. Many new initiatives and pledges have been made by a variety of organisations and this is to be celebrated. As we leave the year of the centenary of women’s suffrage behind we need to be vigilant that these commitments do not fall by the wayside or become less important as time goes on.  

Illuminate Women’s Music, now in its second year of running its touring concert series, is proud to continuing supporting women composers from both the past and present as well as particularly supporting women performers. The reason I originally set up Illuminate Women’s Music is still more relevant that ever, with programming only changing very slowly. Related to this, change in the pedagogical sphere is moving at an even slower pace. It is vital that women composers are seen and heard by the general public across the UK; as Betty Atterbury expresses, ‘Omission is a powerful teacher’ so we should seek change in our educational, programming and commissioning spheres.

Much of the concert-going audience, by their own admission, know very little about women’s music. This can be seen from Illuminate’s 2018 concert survey, which showed that 64% of Illuminate’s audience admitted to never having heard of any of the women composers on the programme before. By programming both historical and living women composers side-by-side in Illuminate concerts, I hope to continue to create a forum to celebrate creative women from across the ages. In the long term, I hope works by women composers will be considered as equal to canonic works whose places are safe in concert programmes. As our knowledge of female composers grows, continued omission is unacceptable; lack of a fair hearing leads to unjustifiable neglect. I hope through Illuminate Women’s Music, to begin to reverse the tide, even in a small way.

Illuminate Women’s Music has two seasons in 2019, supporting even more women composers and performers than before. llluminate’s first 2019 season (March-September 2019), which is supported by the PRS Foundation Open Fund for Organisation and Ambache Charitable Trust, supports five new commissions from composers  Kerensa Briggs and Laura Shipsey and Illuminate composers in residence, Angela Elizabeth Slater, Sarah Westwood, and Blair Boyd, for new works for Boston-based Prism trio and UK- based Ethel Smyth Trio . Having been premiered in Boston, MA earlier this year several UK performances are soon to follow, with visits to Brighton Music and Wine series at St Luke’s on 30th August, York Late Music series on 7th September, 14th September Music at St Mary’s in Stafford, and Stonevale concert series in Oxford 15th September. Historical works by Morfydd Owen, Grażyna Bacewicz and. Historical works by Morfydd Owen, Grażyna Bacewicz and Ethel Smyth will be programmed alongside these new works. Highlights will include Morfydd Owen’s 1914 piano trio, a work which has never been performed in the US and is little known in the UK, and Lili Boulanger’s D’un Matin de Printemps for piano trio.

Indeed, Illuminate Women’s Music is delighted to be supporting the promotion of Morfydd Owen’s music again in 2019. 2018 marked the centenary of Morfydd’s death and therefore it is more important than ever to bring her music to audiences. In 2019 Morfydd Owen’s music will be performed across the UK at Ludlow English Song Festival in April, Llangollen International Musical Eisteddford in July and, excitingly, the Cardiff University Chamber Choir are planning to tour some of Owen’s choral music in China at the end of the year. You can find out more about the recent surge in interest of Morfydd’s Owen music in Dr Rhian Davies recent blog.


Illuminate Season II (September-November 2019) sees the formation of the Illuminate string quartet from performers Clarice Rarity (violin), Christine Cornwell (violin) Katherine Clarke (viola) and Cecelia Bignall (cello) who will also be joined by soprano singer Patricia Auchterlonie. Season II has commissioned  Illuminate composers in residence as well as Caroline Bordignon, Yfat Soul Zisso and Joanna Ward. Illuminate Season II will start at University of Bangor’s Second International Conference on Women’s Work in Music on 5th September, highlighting historical composers Rebecca Clarke, and Barbara Strozzi. This is particularly significant as 2019 marks the (birth) anniversaries of composer Barbara Strozzi, and the 40th anniversary of the death of Rebecca Clarke.


Illuminate season II will then visit Birmingham (Centrala 12th October), Oxford (St Michael’s near Northgate 4th November), University of Huddersfield (7th November), University College Oxford (8th November) and Emmanuel College Cambridge (9th November). In these concerts we are also looking forward to programming music Ruth Crawford Seeger and her talented student Vivian Fine with her Four Songs for string quartet and soprano.

Illuminate Women’s Music 2019 concerts will showcase the rich and exciting variety in women’s music, rightly bringing this wonderful repertoire as well as new works to new audiences both in the US and UK! I hope you will join Illuminate for both our season I and II concerts this year to celebrate the music and work of women composers and performers. 

Dr Angela Elizabeth Slater is founder and director Illuminate Women’s Music.



tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1450715 2019-09-01T21:18:16Z 2019-09-01T21:18:17Z Silesian String Quartet play Grażyna Bacewicz - BBC Proms - Monday 2 September 1 pm

The Silesian String Quartet play Grażyna Bacewicz's Piano Quintet No 1 with Wojciech Świtała at the piano, along with Mieczysław Weinberg's String Quartet No 7.

Cadogan Hall Monday 2 September 1 pm


tag:womeninmusicblog.org.uk,2013:Post/1450436 2019-08-31T20:38:13Z 2019-08-31T20:38:14Z Nuages by Linda Catlin Smith - BBC Proms 1 September 7.30pm

Linda Catlin Smith's BBC Commission Nuages is premiered by the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.

BBC Proms 1 September 7.30pm