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Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival 2011

"Re-Sounding Science"

Thursday 10 February – Sunday 13 February 2011

Festival Directors:
Simon Ible, Director of Music, University of Plymouth
Eduardo R Miranda, Professor of Computer Music, University of Plymouth

One of the UK’s most innovative festivals of contemporary music with 3 days of performances and premieres of the latest in contemporary classical music, including performances, compositions and talks by Eduardo Miranda, Will Dutta, Ten Tors Orchestra, John Matthias, Luciane Cardassi, Plaid, Nigel Morgan, Quayola, liminal (David Prior / Frances Crow), Roy Ascott, Cafe Concrete, Alexis KIrke and Stephen Davismoon.

The Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival 2011 – titled “Re-sounding Science” - will re-evaluate, re-educate and promote artistically science’s role in society, sustainability and the arts. It will challenge stereotypes by drawing musical inspiration from the hugely positive part science and technology have to play in our future, both in our everyday routines and our creative life.

Science and technology are full of beauty and creativity in their theories and practices, and can be utilized to produce astonishing art. They create far more solutions than problems – and our future health and sustainability are heavily dependent on the vision of scientific researchers. Sometimes the technology that makes the headlines is the less positive elements, and there is a false image is propagated of a black-and-white division between the arts and science – that somehow artists are more “creative” than scientific researchers.

“Re-sounding Science” will present performances and media than tap into the beauty of scientific apparatus, the technological tools of 21st century music creation, the inspiration of our planet’s bio-diverse beauty, and the science of the most complex and beautiful machine of all: the human brain.

This year’s festival will also include talks, installations, films and workshops of contemporary acoustic and electroacoustic music.

For tickets click here: Peninsula Arts Box Office.

PACMF Programming Liaison Assistant:Alexis Kirke


NeuroArts Conference

Running in parallel on February 10th and 11th is the NeuoArts conference. In Neuro-arts, scientists, artists, musicians and academics are collaborating across disciplines resulting in the formation of artistic projects, the establishment of new neuronal technologies and the development of areas of Neuro-aesthetics, Neuro-ethics and Neuro-philosophy. The conference provides an introduction to this emerging field. For details and registration, visit the NeuroArts 2011 website.


Thurs 10th February


Festival Workshop/Conference Free event
venue tbc, University of Plymouth

'NeuroArts': Festival Workshop on Neuroscience, Art and Music


Public presentations by world experts on the relationship between Music/Art and Neuroscience. Participants include Jane Grant, John Matthias, Prof Arthur Miller, Magnus Richardson (University of Warwick), Stephen Coombes (University of Nottingham), Steve Potter (Georgia Institute of Technology), Andy Miah (University of West Scotland), Barbara Maria Staffrod, Roy Ascott, and Frederic Voisin.



Friday 11 February


Festival Workshop/Conference Free event
venue tbc, University of Plymouth

'NeuroArts': Festival Workshop on Neuroscience, Art and Music

Continuation of free public presentations by world experts on the relationship between Music/Art and Neuroscience. Participants include Jane Grant, John Matthias, Prof Arthur Miller, Magnus Richardson (University of Warwick), Stephen Coombes (University of Nottingham), Steve Potter (Georgia Institute of Technology), Andy Miah (University of West Scotland), Barbara Maria Staffrod, Roy Ascott, and Frederic Voisin.



Festival Launch Free event
Crosspoint, Roland Levinksy Building, University of Plymouth

Festival Launch
Simon Ible, Eduardo R Miranda

The festival directors will launch PACMF 2011 in the Crosspoint foyer of the Roland Levinsky building. This includes Hanns Holger Rutz's piece:

«Inter-Play / Re-Sound»

A derelict piano is not only a beautiful piece of furniture with each of its 84 keys being different, it also turns out to be a marvellous reverberation machine when used as electroacoustic multi-channel amplifier. In «Inter-Play / Re-Sound», a continuum is created between a live electronic music piece and sound installation. While the piece starts with a human performer, a computer is joining in, gathering a memory of sounds and gestures, which it continues to spin on, leaving the piano as an installed, re-sounding artefact.



Pre-concert talk Free event
Crosspoint, Roland Levinksy Building, University of Plymouth

Cloud Chamber Synthesizer and the Solo Violin Talk
Alexis Kirke

Cloud Chamber Synthesis and the Solo Violin by Alexis Kirke is a complex performance set-up with contributions including the subatomic particle visual recognition to sound conversion system by Dr. Anna Troisi, Antonino Chiaramonte and Prof Eduardo Miranda; as well as the calculations by Brian Foster, FRS, OBE - Professor of Particle Physics at Oxford University, and European Director of the CERN's new International Linear Accelerator project; Genhua Pan, Professor of Spintronics and Neomagnetism the UoP; and radioactive materials from Dr. Miranda-Keith Roach - Associate Professor in Environmental Chemistry at the UoP. Composer Alexis Kirke gives a pre-concert talk about his piece for live interaction between subatomic particles and violinist John Matthias.



Theatre 1, Roland Levinsky Building, University of Plymouth

Alexis Kirke and John Matthias, John Matthias and Adrian Corker and Andy Prior, Will Dutta and Plaid

John Matthias is an award winning musician, singer and composer. In 2008, he won the PRS Foundation New Music Award (the musical equivalent of ‘The Turner Prize’) for the development of a huge sonic installation entitled The Fragmented Orchestra with Jane Grant and Nick Ryan. He has released three albums, Smalltown, Shining (2001) on the Accidental label, Stories from the Watercooler (2008) on the Ninja Tune/ Counter label and Cortical Songs (2008) (with Nick Ryan), a work for string orchestra and solo violin which includes remixes by Thom Yorke, Simon Tong, Jem Finer and many others, on the Nonclassical record label. He has worked with many recording artists including Radiohead (The Bends), Matthew Herbert and Coldcut. He is the deputy director of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research at the University of Plymouth.

Will Dutta is also a concert pianist and collaborator noted for his unique and intelligent programming skills, connecting the dots between modern dance music and classical, contemporary and experimental art music. He studied piano performance with Philip Fowke and Mikhail Kazakevich at Trinity College of Music and was mentored by Joanna MacGregor as part of the PRS for Music Foundation New Music Plus award he received in 2009. Recent highlights include performances at Kings Place, Ether 10 at the Southbank Centre and Café Oto and new collaborations with Max de Wardener, Plaid, John Richards and Scanner.

Plaid is a London-based British electronic music duo comprising Andy Turner and Ed Handley. They are former members of The Black Dog. They have collaborated with female singers Mara Carlyle, Nicolette and Björk, and have released records on Warp Records (along with Trent Reznor's label Nothing Records). Plaid have done extensive remix work for many other artists, including Red Snapper, Björk, Goldfrapp, and The Irresistible Force. Plaid often works collaboratively with video artist Bob Jaroc, whose animations often accompanied the music during live performances. They have developed a DVD entitled Greedy Baby. The project was was first shown at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in the South Bank Centre, and subsequently at the BFI Imax cinema in Waterloo, London andreleased on DVD from Warp Records on June 26, 2006. In 2006, Plaid composed and performed the original score to Michael Arias's anime film Tekkon Kinkreet, and then went on to rejoin Arias for his second feature, Heaven's Door. In 2009 they contributed a cover of a Plone song to the Warp20 (Recreated) compilation.

Alexis Kirke is a composer who works across multiple platforms including the large-scale multimedia and acoustic works, the creation of science-based algorithmic scores, soundtracks for silent film shows and the supply of tracks for production music libraries. He holds a PhD in Multi-Robot Systems, and recently completed a PhD in Computer Music. Alexis has worked as a Project Manager and a Stock Market Analyst (where he developed some of the foundation concepts of the industry textbook ‘Optimal Trading Strategies’). He is a member of the University of Plymouth's Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research, and has published articles on Algorithmic Composition and Performance. Alexis is a poet and critic who has written for publications such as Terrible Work, Oasis, Tremblestone (UK) and Transmog (US). He has also been invited to read at Glastonbury Festival, and was editor of the UK's first poetry webzine 'Brink'.

Saturday 12 February


Festival Talk Free event
Jill Craigie Cinema, Roland Levinsky Building, University of Plymouth

Fifteen Images – Music and Textiles Interact Talk
Nigel Morgan and Alice Fox

Computer-aided composition meets textiles meets digital animation meets jazz; composer Nigel Morgan is joined by textile artist Alice Fox to discuss their recent collaboration with technologist Phil Legard and jazz musician Matt Robinson. Their lecture expands on a groundbreaking article published in the new journal Craft Research from Intellect Press.

Alice Fox is a textile artist studying Contemporary Surface Design and Textiles at Bradford School of Art and Media. She has an intense interest in the natural world and in the detail of organic things. Her acutely observed work on Fifteen Images brings digital manipulation of textile images alongside printmaking and embroidery.

Nigel Morgan is a composer and concert guitarist. He is visiting research fellow at Plymouth University and a member of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research. He is currently developing Active Notation, a digital environment that makes for a more dynamic relationship between performer and composer.


12.00pm - 4:00pm

Concert Free event
Crosspoint & Cinema, Roland Levinsky Building, University of Plymouth

interFace 2011
Nigel Morgan , Café Concrete, David Strang, Michael McInerney and Roberto Paci Dalò with guest pianist Matthew Robinson

Interface presents performances by members and collaborators of the University of Plymouth’s ICCMR. Including multiple projection visuals and music, Interface 2011 offers an exciting and accessible glimpse into the future of classical and popular music in an informal and relaxing atmosphere. The concert begins in the crosspoint and finishes in the cinema.

Event Highlights:

Fifteen Images (Le Jardin Pluvieux) – for keyboard with Active Notation This hour-long contemplation on the garden of a 17th century Quaker Meeting House brings together a composer, a textile artist, a technologist and a jazz pianist to create a gentle adventure in real-time music and image integration. It is presented by Textiles and Music Interact, a research-into-practice team led by composer Nigel Morgan. See weblink.

Matthew Robinson is a jazz pianist and composer studying at the Royal Academy of Music, London. An emerging performer on the contemporary jazz scene he now heads up his own five-piece ensemble. He gave the first performance of Nigel Morgan’s Fifteen Images in 2009.

* Click here for 2009 interview about the previous year's Interface *



Theatre 1, Roland Levinsky Building, University of Plymouth

Ten Tors Orchestra, Eduardo Miranda, Sam Richards, David Bessell

The highlight of the concert is "Mind Pieces" (World Premiere) a new 5-movement long symphony for prepared piano, percussion and orchestra, by Eduardo Reck Miranda. "Mind Pieces" is inspired by the phenomenon of memory retrieval by the brain and how our memory frequently distorts information. This composition uses musical materials generated with A-life (or Artificial Life) computational modelling techniques developed at ICCMR to model various biological processes, such as for example the way in which information travels through networks of neurons in the brain. The piece also embodies Miranda's research into contemporary orchestration techniques inspired by composer's such as Berlioz, Holst, Ravel and Stravinsky, spiced with John Cage's prepared piano timbres.

Eduardo Reck Miranda is a composer working at the crossroads of music and science. His music is informed and inspired by his research into Artificial Intelligence in significant ways. His repertoire includes music for symphonic orchestras, chamber groups, solo instruments - with and without live electronics - and electroacoustic music. A few years ago he was appointed Fellow in composition of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation in New York to conduct research into phonology, computational modelling of the human voice and evolution of music. His music has been broadcast and performed at festivals and concerts worldwide, by renowned performers and ensembles such as Ian Pace, Frances M Lynch, Luciani Cardassi, Catarina Domenici, Mårten Landström, Simone Sahyouni, Ney Rosauro, Sttela Dvořáčková, Jérôme Vallet, Fabiana Galante, Oscar Aponte, Heleen van Haegenborgh, The Saltire String Quartet, The Eade String Quartet, The Chamber Group of Scotland, Scottish Chamber Orchestra (SCO), Orquestra Sinfônica de Porto Alegre (OSPA) and Ten Tors Orchestra, to cite but a few. Currently, he is Professor of Computer Music in the School of Humanities and Performing Arts at the University of Plymouth, UK, where he is director of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research (ICCMR) and co-director of the Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival.

Dr David Bessell, studied composition with Edwin Roxburgh at the Royal College of Music. (second study guitar) Currently composing music based on acoustic principles (spectral music) for conventional orchestral instruments often alongside electronics. These pieces have been performed internationally. Also now engaged in research in to software synthesis and physical modelling. Before becoming an academic David Bessell had a 20 year career in the popular music industry.


Sunday 13 February

12:00 noon

Festival Talk Free event
Theatre 2, Roland Levinsky Building, University of Plymouth

liminal Talk
David Prior and Frances Crow

Liminal are winners of the PRSF New Music Award 2010, the UK’s most ambitious music prize. liminal’s proposal for the ‘Organ of Corti’ will recycle unwanted sound in the environment to create an unfolding musical composition. In a world saturated with sounds, the ‘Organ of Corti’ questions whether we need any more noise and instead, offers a new frame through which to listen to the sounds which already surround us.



Upper Theatre, Sherwell Centre, University of Plymouth

Going North
Luciane Cardassi

Brazilian-Canadian pianist Luciane Cardassi is a noted performer of new music who regularly premiers works by a diverse, international group of emerging and established composers. She earned a doctorate in contemporary music performance from the University of California, San Diego. Recent collaborations include new compositions for piano and electronics by Canadian composers Chantale Laplante, Emilie Lebel, John Celona, Terri Hron, Darren Miller and Aaron Gervais, Brazilian composers Eduardo Reck Miranda, Rafael de Oliveira, Felipe Ribeiro and Jorge Villavicencio Grossman, US composer Brian Griffeath-Loeb and UK composers Hywel Davies and Stephen Davismoon. She is currently developing a concert entitled “Going North – a musical journey with a Brazilian-Canadian pianist” with pieces for piano, pianist voice, electronics and video by Canadian and Brazilian composers, for which she received an Alberta Creative Development Initiative grant. She will be premiering this concert in October 2010 at the Banff Centre, Canada, then perform it in venues in South America and Europe. Luciane now lives in Banff, Canada. She is an artist in residence at The Banff Centre, and the pianist of the New Music ensemble Rubbing Stone, the resident ensemble of New Works Calgary. In March 2010 she performed Karlheinz Stockausen's Kontakte with Eric Bumstead (percussion) and Jonty Harrison (electronics) in Birmingham, U.K., at the invitation of BEAST (Birmingham ElectroAcoustic Sound Theatre). As she describes, “The focus of my work is collaborations with other artists; investigating new ways of expression and creating new works. As a pianist, the most exciting aspect of my work is being part of the creative process, not only repeating what was done in the past, but seeking to create the future.”


Festival Film Free event
Jill Craigie Cinema, Roland Levinsky Building, University of Plymouth


The secret lives of invisible magnetic fields are revealed as chaotic ever-changing geometries . All action takes place around NASA's Space Sciences Laboratories, UC Berkeley, to recordings of space scientists describing their discoveries . Actual VLF audio recordings control the evolution of the fields as they delve into our inaudible surroundings, revealing recurrent ‘whistlers' produced by fleeting electrons . Are we observing a series of scientific experiments, the universe in flux, or a documentary of a fictional world?. Awarded the Nature Scientific Merit Award by Imagine Science Film Festival, New York 2009. Purchased by the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington for the permenant collection 2008. Awarded Best Film at Cutting Edge at the British Animation Awards 2008. Special Mention, Best International Experimental Short at Leeds International Film Festival 2008. Awarded Best Experimental Film at Tirana International Film Festival 2007.



Theatre 1, Roland Levinsky Building, University of Plymouth

Whispering Score (World Premiere)

Sam Richards, Tim Sayer

Work inspired by Maximillian Wundt, German medical doctor, psychologist, physiologist, philosopher, and professor.

Note: all events FREE to UoP Students

Past Editions of the Festival

Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival
Friday 26 February, Saturday 27 February, Sunday 28 Feb 2010

Music and Evolution
Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival
Friday 27 February, Saturday 28 February, Sunday 1st March 2009

Voices III
Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival
Friday 22, Saturday 23, Sunday 24 February 2008

Voices II
Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival
Friday 23, Saturday 24, Sunday 25, Monday 26 February 2007

Voices I
Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival
Friday 24, Saturday 25& Sunday 26 February 2006

Contemporary Music Weekend
Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Weekend
Performance, Technology and Research
Friday 25, Saturday 26 & Sunday 27 February 2005
A weekend of research and new creative developments
at the Computer Music Research Lab University of Plymouth.



Eduardo Reck Miranda

Simon Ible


Luciane Cardassi

John Matthias


Will Dutta

Sam Richards

Nigel Morgan

Alice Fox

Matthew Robinson

David Bessell

Hanns Holger Rutz
Hanns Holger Rutz

Alexis Kirke