Stoke Newington Contemporary Music Festival

SNCMF II.bmp ii

Friday 1st – Sunday 3rd November 2013

Introduction to the festival

Stoke Newington Contemporary Music Festival is back. Following last year’s successful pilot, London’s local new music festival offers no less than 19 premières – brand spanking new pieces specially written for us and for you, which you won’t be able to hear anywhere else. Focussed around themes of the past and the present, the piano and the voice, our events encompass solo piano, string quartet, voice and choir and spoken-word, in the inspiring and vibrant settings of St Mary’s Church and Ryan’s bar. Headline artists Stephen Gutman and Elena Riu are both international pianists at the top of their game – hear them unleash their contemporary-music expertise on programmes mashing up the old and the new. Adventurous young ensemble Ishirini bring a feast of the new to the table and a new string quartet deliver a packed programme of premierès linked to the bicentenary of French maître Charles-Valentin Alkan; Ishirini with a selection box showcasing their eclectic new music and commissioning programme. Plus absolute classics by John Cage, Morton Feldman, Henry Cowell, John Adams, Benjamin Britten, Kurt Schwitters and more.

This year’s festival delivers seven concerts over three days in two venues:
St. Mary’s Church, Stoke Newington Church Street
and Ryan’s Bar, 181 Stoke Newington Church Street [final event only]



Friday 1st November 2013


7.30pm Stephen Gutman, piano recital

An outcome of a highly-praised project developed over a number of years, and encompassing recording, publication and performance, this event intersperses keyboard works by Rameau with contemporary classics.


Jean-Phillipe Rameau (1683-1784) – Nouvelle Suite in G
John Cage (1912-1992) – The Seasons
John Adams (b. 1947) – China Gates
Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) – Holiday Diary
Eric Satie (1866-1925) – 2 Nocturnes
Jonathan Harvey (1939-2012) – Vers


Saturday 2nd November 2013


1pm Alkan String Quartet project

World premières of miniatures based on a fragment of a string quartet by Charles-Valentin Alkan (1813-1888) in the collection of the British Library – specially written by a wide range of contemporary composers, including a new work by Michael Finnissy.

Charles-Valentin Alkan (1813-1888) – Fragment for string quartet
Richard Lannoy – Alkan Project (2013)*
Alex Nikiporenko – Kaftan Mangler*
Alison Beckett – Again*
Susie Self – Alkan Five*
Neil Luck – Clubb*
Adam de la Cour – Fragment*
Laonikos Psimikakis-Chalkokondylis -11 transformations on Alkan*
Gina Fergione – Alalkan*
Lisa Reim – Seedlings*
Gabriel Keen – Short piece for string quartet inspired by a fragment by Alkan*
Matthew Lee Knowles – After one hundred and fifty notes by Alkan*
Joshua Kaye – Better Late*
Michael Finnissy – Mad Men in the Sand*
Andy Ingamells – Double Quartet*


4pm Young Peoples’ Concert

A free event featuring local instrumental students playing contemporary pieces.

Claudio Gaete (piano) – “Snow Cloud, Over Lochan” by Peter Maxwell Davies 
Oriana O’Sullivan (Violin) – “Turlaj Sei, Pileczko!” by D.Obijalska-M.Wawruk
Raphael Gaete (piano) – “If the Silver Bird Could Speak” by Eleanor Alberga / “Memorial Blues” by Gabriel Jackson 
Fiore Lucia O’Sullivan (cello) – “Cantabile” by Christopher Scobie / (piano) “The Sun is Setting” by William Alwyn 
Sophia Walls (piano) – “Mira” by Stephen Montague / “Birds Beyond” by Sophia Walls 
Henry Roberts (flute) – “Ko-kopelli” by Katherine Hoover / “Coltrane” by David Heath 
Rose Yemelyanova (piano) – “Landscape” by Philip Cashian May Kersley (piano) “Night Pieces” by Peter Sculthorpe / “In a Landscape” by John Cage 
Ieva Caune (piano) “The Landscape of the Sea” by Eriks Ešenvalds / “Suite” by Norman Dello Joio 
Lucy Murphy (piano) “Argentinian Dances, 2nd movement” by Alberto Ginastera / “Dr J and Mr Hyde’s Cheek to Cheek Midnight Rave” by Elena Riu 
Damon Falk (piano) “Sonatina” by Moisés Moleiro / “Snow, Moon and Flowers” by Peter Sculthorpe


7.30pm Elena Riu, piano recital ‘Inventions’

Elena Riu’s ‘Inventions’ is a creative curatorial project which sparks new connections between Bach and contemporary composers who have conceived works informed by his examples.Composed as teaching material, Bach’s Inventions and Sinfonias were amongst his most popular works. With this collection Elena has gathered a selection of pieces which distil new material out of the old: Bach’s ideas are reformulated using different parameters, styles and musical languages by a host of twentieth and twenty-first century composers.


Federico Mompou (1893-1987) – From Charmes:
– Pour penetrer les ames
– Pour inspirer l’amour
– Pour appeler la joie
Diana Arismendi (b. 1962) – Invencion No 1
J.S. Bach (1685-1750) – Sinfonia No 5 in E flat
Diana Arismendi – Invencion No 2
J.S. Bach – Sinfonia No 6 in E
Diana Arismendi – Invencion No 3
J.S. Bach – Invention No 4 in D minor
Sofia Gubaidulina (b. 1931) – Invention
Huw Watkins (b. 1976) – Invention IV
J.S. Bach – Invention No 1 in C
Henry Cowell (1897-1965) – Two-part Invention in three parts
J.S. Bach – Invention No 10 in G
Douglas Finch – Invention
J.S. Bach – Invention No 9 in F minor
Alfredo Rugeles (b.1949) – Invencion
Lola Perrin (b.1958) – Poet Reflecting
J.S. Bach – Invention in B flat
Rodion Shchedrin (b. 1932) – Two part Invention

Peter Sculthorpe (b. 1929) – Night Pieces
Federico Mompou – Prelude No 7 : Palmier d’Etoiles


Sunday 3rd November 2013


1pm Lunchtime Concert – Gabriel Keen, Matthew Lee Knowles, Christopher Scobie, piano

A concert featuring works for piano solo and duet from the Anglo-American experimental tradition alongside a new work in the unusual genre of concerto for solo piano.

Cornelius Cardew (1936-1981) – February Piece II
Morton Feldman (1926-1987) – Intermission 6
Laurence Crane (b. 1961) – Piano Duets
Brian Inglis (b. 1969) – Concerto for solo piano (Homage to Alkan)*


3.30pm Ishirini/Gina Fergione

Innovative chamber choir Ishirini comprise a group of adventurous choral singers. As well as international tours to Tanzania, India and Jordan, they have been consistently active in commissioning new work since their formation on 2009. This concert brings together some of these commissions with contemporary works by more established composers in their repertoire.
Mezzo-soprano Gina Fergione presents a programme of works featuring the solo voice with a range of different accompaniments.


Diana Burrell (b. 1948) – Ave Verum Corpus
John Cage (1912-1992) – Four2 
Anon – Netherbury manuscript
Brian Inglis (b. 1969) – Verbum Bonum et Suave
Owen Leech (b. 1971) – The Lily of Heaven
Benjamin Finn – Nunc Dimittis
Howard Skempton (b. 1947) – He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven

Gina Fergione

John Cage – The Wonderful Widow of Eighteen Springs
John Cage – A Flower
Nicola LeFanu (b. 1947) – But Stars Remaining
Christopher Scobie (b. 1983) – Amo*
Lisa Reim – Quid Sum Miser


8pm Spoken Word Event: Ryan’s Bar, 181 Stoke Newington Church Street N16 0UL

The culminating event takes place in the more informal surroundings of Ryan’s Bar. This performance by Matthew Lee Knowles and Adam de la Cour presents John Cage’s classic spoken-word piece Lecture on Nothing, paired with its older predecessor, Kurt Schwitters’ seminal Ursonate. Interspersed with classical DJ-ing from Richard Lannoy.

John Cage – Lecture on Nothing
Kurt Schwitters (1887-1948) – Ursonate

TICKETS: Friday, Saturday 7.30 pm: £10 (£8 concessions)
Young students’ concert: by donation
All other events: £5 (£4)
Weekend tickets: £30 (£25)
Info/bookings: 07931 258678