SOUND WORLD’S CORONAVIRUS FUND FOR FREELANCE MUSICIANS via CROWDFUNDER

UYMP is extremely excited to announce that one of our house composers, Sadie Harrison, is taking part in a project devised by Julian Leeks, the director of Sound World, to raise funds, and provide essential support, for freelance musicians from the Bristol Ensemble who are struggling with great losses of work during the lockdown period due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Sound World, the organisation behind this project, is a music and education charity which is aiming to raise £7000 to employ freelance musicians from the Bristol Ensemble. This collection of fantastic performers have been at the heart of Sound World’s work for many years and much of this organisation’s success is due to their talent and generosity of spirit. These musicians’ livelihoods have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. Therefore, this project will see these musicians perform and record a new, multi-movement work, written by 12 leading composers from around the world. In a gesture of support for, and solidarity with, their performing colleagues, the composers are waiving their commission fees; also, Sound World is not charging a fee for running this project.

The incredible collection of composers for this project is as follows*:

  •  Sally Beamish
  •  Gavin Bryars
  •  Michael Ellison
  •  Graham Fitkin
  •  Dame Evelyn Glennie
  •  Sadie Harrison
  •  Nico Muhly
  •  John Pickard
  •  Geoff Poole
  •  Howard Skempton
  •  Mark-Anthony Turnage
  •  * and Steve Reich who has granted us exclusive rights to create and use an arrangement of our choice of one his works.

Sadie Harrison’s work for this project, for four individual instrumentalists playing the flute, violin, viola, and piano, is entitled Corona defined. This work is also written especially for the work’s dedicatees: Paul Barrett (violin), Fran Hicks (viola), Steph Gilbert (flute) and Tomas Klément (piano). The piece is in four brief movements, in total lasting just over three minutes. Each uses a different definition of the word ‘corona’ as its starting point.

After the completion of Harrison’s and the other composers’ works for this project, the performers will record their individual parts at home, in “lockdown”, in accordance with government restrictions. The recorded parts will then be edited and mixed for online distribution (via streaming and download sites). This project focuses on creating something genuinely positive and valuable out of a terrible situation. It solves an immediate financial crisis, not through charity handouts, but through a wonderful, collaborative, artistic endeavour. It will make a real difference to the participants, not just in material terms, but to their wellbeing and mental health. It will also provide the wider public with a great example of what art and artists can achieve and contribute in a time of need. This project will consequently culminate, after the “lockdown” period, in a big concert of the pieces to celebrate FREEDOM!

With your help, these musicians will receive upfront payment of their recording fees, providing immediate relief from financial hardship. Any revenue from online sales and any donations received beyond Sound World’s initial target will also go towards helping more musicians, making a difference to more people's lives.

(30 Apr 2020)

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