GLASGOW-based musician and composer, Matilda Brown, debuts her new ensemble on Monday 6th August as part of Edinburgh’s Festival of Spirituality and Peace.
The singer will bring to the festival ten of her uniquely evocative and atmospheric compositions, within the airy and resonant space of the St John’s Church on Princes Street (Venue 127).
Far from the maddening crowds of Edinburgh during festival time, Matilda Brown often dissolves in to the hills and mountains of Scotland, sometimes in her solitude, and other times with photographer, Nick Rawle, whose images of their treks will be projected to provide an underscore of contextuality.
Matilda Brown explains: “We’ll be performing a mix of jazz, classical and experimental instrumentals with reflective duos and songs, taking in all the aspects of a real journey through the mountainous terrain, the highs and lows, and of course in Scotland, the weather.
“Then realising the distance you’ve overcome, and finally the euphoria of arriving, with all your worldly possessions for survival on your back.”
Matilda Brown has previously worked with the London Symphony Orchestra, Mr McFall’s Chamber Orchestra, as well as facilitating community based music with Drake Music (Scotland), and is excited with the possibilities of her new ensemble.
She says: “I have carefully chosen the musicians that I want me and my music to work with. Graeme Stephen is a very intuitive jazz guitarist.
“I have played with him for a while now and he is instinctive in knowing when to keep true to the score and when to express himself, and this year he won the ‘Innovation’ prize at the Scottish Jazz Awards for his score for the film ‘Sunrise a Song Of 2 Humans.
“Chris Wallace on drums is another winner at this year’s Scottish Jazz Awards, as a member of ‘Ensemble of the Year’, NeWt.
“He is familiar with the rhythmic patterns of my work and immediately recognised my fondness for Prog Rock.
“I worked with our clarinettist, Jo Nicholson at the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and recently on a project in Fraserburgh.
“Jo plays with a graceful beauty and adds a zesty energy to the construct of the score. She’s a very calm player and person, who is very witty.
“Rosenna East is currently a member of Mr McFall’s Orchestra, who are internationally renowned. Her violin playing is precisely elegant, but can grow organically during improvisation.”
This Edinburgh performance is the public debut of the ensemble; but they can be seen again in October at the ‘Sound Festival,’ North East Scotland’s new music festival, and Matilda Brown wants her ensemble to expand in to other areas with other musicians and instrumentation.
She continued: “I want us to grow in to working on larger-scale projects involving film, theatre and dance in connection to walking and the wilderness, allowing the music to be the starting point and the source of inspiration in creating other mediums.
“We also want to write more new and diverse music that can incorporate more live sound effects and other instruments to give it strength and colour.”
“However, crucially and very importantly it’s about a commitment to new music in Scotland, celebrating its landscape, encouraging and cultivating Scottish music and its music making,” she concluded.
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