Meet the Artist – Thomas Simaku

On 14 February 2019, an interview, conducted by Frances Wilson, The Cross-Eyed Pianist, concerning UYMP’s House Composer, Thomas Simaku, was published.

In answer to the question ‘what do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?’, Simaku stated:

“Being a composer in our modern time, where everything seems to be driven by a culture of doing things fast, in order to get rich and famous as soon as possible, is not an easy thing to do! Our work is measured with minutes, and we spend hours and hours to compose a minute of music, but I do it because I can’t do without it! I am still optimistic, for me the glass has always been half-full. My belief is that, when it comes to creativity, one should at least try to speak with one’s voice, however small that might be! I’ve been teaching composition for some 20 years now, and often say to my students: ‘Write the music that you want to hear, not the music that I want to hear, because that one, I can write it myself!’”

This response encapsulates just a few of the fascinating and inspiring insights into the compositional life of Thomas Simaku which can be found within this interview.

Simaku is firstly questioned on what inspired him and continually influences him to pursue composition and a career in music. Glimpses into the challenges, frustrations, successes and pleasures of his musical career, most especially in relation to his commissioned compositions and particular musicians with whom he has worked, are also provided. Within this interview, it is also revealed how Simaku categorises his compositional language and how he works. Simaku even divulges which works he is most proud of, who his favourite musicians are and what his most memorable concert experience has been.

Here at UYMP, we would greatly encourage all of our followers to delve into this interview for yourselves to discover more about Simaku’s remarkable compositional life.

(18 Feb 2019)

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