Montrose Composers’ Club is a group of like-minded composers based in East Kent who meet regularly to try out new ideas, perform their music and promote it to the wider world.
The MCC was founded in September 2015 and they convene at Montrose House in Folkestone, Kent. The Club comprises of local composers Aidan Shepherd, Ian Fleming, Matthew Brown, Anna Braithwaite and Phil Self, who all studied classical composition. Their eclectic careers have lent their writing flavours of folk, jazz, cabaret and electronics, allowing them to create genre-defying sounds for savvy ears.
The MCC returned to the Profound Sound festival with more weird and wonderful new sounds for string quartet, piano, accordion and a host of other instruments and objects. They played contemporary classical music with a casual attitude towards convention at a festival where everyone is welcome! The programme included:
"As part of ongoing writing experiments with other members of the Montrose Composers' Club I composed a piece with Aidan Shepherd. He gave the piece a name, 'The Wooden Knight' and wrote the first eight bars for solo voice. I then added the next eight bars but only revealed the last two to Aidan. He then added to those without knowing what came before, a compositional game of 'head, body, legs'. We did not discuss the piece at all during this process. I had no idea whether it would be a revelation or disaster but for me as a composer and performer it certainly pushed me out of my comfort zone." Anna Braithwaite
We are continuing to explore 'games' as an inspiration for new music, in a collaboration with graphic artist Myah Chun Grierson and a local fine artist. We are using the basic idea of a Chinese whisper to create a graphic score and improvisation based upon it as part of a new work for guitar, accordion, viola and voice. The fine artist will then react to the music 'live' during our show, something that is new to all of us.
The MCC were delighted to be asked to curate an evening of new music at the ever popular Free Range series in Canterbury. There were premieres of new works as well as highlights from MCCII written for string quartet, piano, accordion and a host of other instruments and objects. Free Range is an award-wining series of experimental music, film and poetry events which happen at 8.30pm every Thursday from October to March at Water Lane Coffeehouse in Canterbury, Kent. All events are free entry.
The club's second concert MCCII took place on October 2nd 2016 in The Waiting Room on Folkestone Harbour.
MCCII saw the group joined by a string players (Flo Peycelon - Violin, Karen Jolliffe - Violin, Matt Brown - Viola and Sarah Boxall - Cello) for a performance of seven new pieces for string quartet, voice, hand bells and a host of other instruments. This informal performance was part of the Folkestone Fun Palace festival and included a chance for the audience to perform with the MCC and improvise some new music.
Images by: loujohnsonphoto.com
MCC member, Aidan Shepherd, launched a new album of his work with band Arlet entitled 'Big Red Sun' in March 2016. To purchase a copy of the beautiful limited edition cd or to catch them performing live, click here.
Please listen to a taster from the new album below.
The debut concert from the MCC on 12th February 2016 formed part of the 'Profound Sound' festival, a weekend of new music and sound art (co-curated by Folkestone Quarterhouse and Folkestone Fringe), which ran from 12th-14th February in Folkestone, Kent.
During this sold out event the five-strong collective premiered seven new pieces written and performed by the members and their special guests.
Images of MCCI by andrewaitchison.com
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