I’m excited to share that the Australian Youth Orchestra are taking my work Frumious (2013) on tour to Germany and China in July. Conducted by Krzysztof Urbański, and featuring pianist Jan Lisiecki, the tour caps off with a homecoming concert at the Sydney Opera House.

You can book tickets via this link.

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Monday 5 August 2019, 8pm
Sydney Opera House

HARRISON
Frumious

RACHMANINOV
Piano Concerto No.2 


- Interval -

SHOSTAKOVICH
Symphony No 10

Jan Lisiecki piano
Krzysztof Urbański
 conductor


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

I’m back after a crazy fun time in Miami! Many thanks to the inspiring folks at Nu Deco Ensemble, and conductor Jacomo Bairos, for an amazing run of shows! It’s been grand. A special mention to the incredible soprano Jessica Jones, who absolutely rocked my And Whether Pigs Have Wings.

It was a real privilege to be programmed alongside Tanner Porter, Jessica Meyer, Sam Hyken, and Tei Shi, who are all fabulous people, composers, and performers. Check out their stuff - now! All photos below taken by Alex Markow.

FEBRUARY 14, 15 and 16 AT  8:00PM

Jessica Meyer - Go Big or Go Home

Holly Harrison - And Whether Pigs Have Wings (Nu Works 2018 Winner)

Tanner Porter - Landlord (Nu Works 2018 Winner)

Special Collaboration featuring Tei Shi

Hyken/Lebos/Lopez/Matthews - Nina Simone Symphonic Suite



Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

I’m super pumped to head back to the US in February - this time to Miami! The amazing Jessica Jones and Nu Deco Ensemble give life to my new arrangement of And Whether Pigs Have Wings, for soprano and large ensemble. It’s across three nights, too - that’s a hat trick!

NU DECO AT the Light Box
Featuring Tei Shi

404 NW 26 St
Miami, FL 33127

FEBRUARY 14, 15 and 16 AT  8:00PM

Tanner Porter - Landlord (Nu Works 2018 Winner)

Holly Harrison - And Whether Pigs Have Wings (Nu Works 2018 Winner)

Jessica Meyer - Go Big or Go Home

Special Collaboration featuring Tei Shi

Hyken/Lebos/Lopez/Matthews - Nina Simone Symphonic Suite


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

World premiere performance of Bend/Boogie/Break by Ensemble Offspring, 29th September 2018 at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

Ensemble Offspring: Véronique Serret (violin) Rowena Macneish (cello) Claire Edwardes (percussion) Zubin Kanga (piano) Jason Noble (clarinet) Lamorna Nightingale (flute).


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

Berlin-based Ensemble Garage have just released a live video of my 2015 work, Frogstomp. This is version 2.0 with baritone sax! Listen out for the frog. . .


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

Enyato Duo give Frogstomp a spin on November 30!

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Fresh from their adventures at the Bang on a Can Festival, Enyato Duo make their Athenaeum debut on November 30th at 6pm!
Joined by sensational guest flutist Tamara Kohler (Rubiks), Enyato is pleased to present an exciting Australian-focused program including world premieres of works by 2017 Pythia Prize-winner Samantha Wolf and Sydney interdisciplinary juggernaut Tim Hansen. Wolf's work, Out of the Depths, explores the uses of water and time as ways to prepare the bass clarinet, and Hansen's soliloquy North Head serves as a timely reminder of the deep scars that line our country in these turbulent times. Enyato are also excited to present works by Holly Harrison, Thea Rossen, Ross Edwards and the Australian premiere of a gem for piccolo and music box by US composer Nicole Randall Chamberlain.

Enyato Duo @ Melbourne Athenaeum Library
Percussion: Thea Rossen
Woodwind: Luke Carbon
Guest Flute: Tamara Kohler (Rubiks)


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AuthorHolly Harrison

Some fun photos from The Hourglass Ensemble’s show in the Utzon Room last week, featuring surprise costume elements for my Lobster Tales and Turtle Soup! Photos by Mark Xiao.


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

Rubiks Collective’s Melbourne performance of Lobster Tales and Turtle Soup is now out on ABC New Waves. The other featured composers are Melbourne-based Samantha Wolf, Samuel Smith, and Jacob Abela. The program is produced and presented by Duncan Yardley.

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Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

The Hourglass Ensemble play Lobster Tales and Turtle Soup as part of their upcoming Utzon Room show. It’s my Sydney Opera House debut, so I’m pumped! Other Australian works by Matthew Hindson and Andrew Ball too. More info here.

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Flutes - Ewa Kowalski
Clarinets/director - Andrew Kennedy
Violin – Alastair Duff-Forbes
Cello – Steve Meyer
Percussion - Timothy Brigden
Piano - Anna Rutkowska-Schock

Repertoire

RACHMANINOFF  Trio “Élégiaque” for violin viola and piano
HARRISON*  “Lobster Tales and Turtle Soup” for flute clarinet violin cello percussion piano
BALL*  “Three Dreams in Pulse”, sonata for clarinet and piano
HINDSON*  “Repetepetition” for flute and vibraphone
KAPUSTIN  Trio for flute cello and piano

* denotes Australian work


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

Some words about my Airbender premiere:

From Clinton White of Limelight:

‘The CSO showcases three outstanding Australian composers in this satisfying concert.

In August 2015, The Observer reported fears that the bassoon had become an “endangered species”, noting that “[a] campaign called Save the Bassoon now aims to remind the public of the importance of this engaging member of the woodwind section and to encourage young musicians to take it up.”

With the instrument in the mind of young Australian composer, Holly Harrison, and in the hands of brilliant bassoonist, Matthew Kneale (described by Matthew Hindson as the “rock-god of the bassoon”), its future is rock-solid safe.

Far from being buried in the woodwind section, the bassoon goes well and truly front and centre in Harrison’s high-energy Airbender for bassoon and string quartet.  The composer, who plays drums and percussion in the improvised rock duo Tabua-Harrison, says her piece “imagines the bassoon as a type of sonic airbender, conjuring up an array of sounds driven by air! … [and] is further inspired by slap bass solos, prog-rock guitar ‘shredding’, and bluegrass sonorities.”

Giving the work its world premiere performance, Kneale rose to the challenge fearlessly, delivering all the work’s in-built qualities.  He built boundless energy through its driving rhythms, raced along the keys with seemingly effortless virtuosity, and showcased his instrument’s amazing agility and incredible range.  The quartet’s part, played here by the Omega Ensemble, is quite understated, giving the bassoon free rein, but pouring a solid foundation, maintaining the rhythms for Kneale’s musical gymnastics.’

Read the full article here.

Below images courtesy of Canberra Symphony Orchestra.

And from Helen Musa of City News:

‘First up was “Airbender for bassoon and string quartet”, by Holly Harrison, who was present on this occasion to talk about the work briefly, as were the other two composers.

The audience was asked to view the bassoon as the “dark horse” of instruments, but there was nothing obscure about star soloist Matthew Kneale, who teased every bit of colour from his chosen instrument in an exciting, urgent performance.

After a solo opening, the Omega Strings came in to provide the driving rhythms to (largely) a dancing dialogue between strings and bassoon, which eventually slowed momentarily before Harrison’s jazz-like inclinations revealed themselves in a lively exchange between the bassoon and violins.

This composer has repeatedly proved wrong the old cliché that there is no humour in music with her mischievous, quirky experiments and the usical conversation turned to what sounded like a dialogue of ships horns sounding in a fog, before returning to the energetic, driving rhythms which characterised the composition.’

Read the full article here.


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

I’m hugely excited for the premiere of my latest work Airbender for bassoon and string quartet as part of Canberra Symphony Orchestra’s Australia Series. It’s been a real treat working with ‘rock-god’ of the bassoon, Matt Kneale. Also on the program is Cyrus Meurant’s Concertino for Clarinet, featuring David Rowden, and a new work by Stuart Greenbaum, featuring harpist Meriel Owen. All soloists are accompanied by Omega Ensemble.

Thursday 25 October, 2018

Gordon Darling Hall, National Portrait Gallery, Canberra 6.30-7.30pm

20/20 Celebrating twenty years with twenty new portrait commissions

Matthew Kneale Bassoon Soloist
Meriel Owen Harp Soloist
David Rowden Clarinet Soloist

Omega Ensemble
Veronique Serret Violin
Airena Nakamura Violin
Neil Thompson Viola
Paul Stender Cello
Kyle Ramsay-Daniel Double Bass

HOLLY HARRISON: New work for bassoon and string quartet (new commission, 2018)
STUART GREENBAUM: New work for harp and string quintet (new commission from the CSO, 2018)
CYRUS MEURANT: Concertino for clarinet and string quartet (2017)

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Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

Next week, Lloyd Van’t Hoff gives A Mad Tea-Party another airing, this time at the Port Fairy Spring Music Festival. I hear it’s sold out! The work was originally written in 2009, during my undergrad days. Lloyd and I revised the piece in March for the Four Winds Festival, trying out some new electronic sounds (for 2018). It’s the opener to Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet, so no pressure or anything!

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Details:

Port Fairy Spring Music Festival

Saturday 13th October, 3:30 PM, St John’s Church

Mozart’s beloved Clarinet Quintet  is brought to life by ABC Young Performer of the Year, Lloyd Van’t Hoff with the Flinders Quartet. This sunniest of works is the epitome of lyricism and charm, especially in such assured musical hands. To open the concert, Lloyd’s more virtuosic and playful side is given free rein in Australian composer Holly Harrison’s exuberant and witty A Mad Tea-Party, one of her many brilliant works inspire by Carroll’s ‘Alice in Wonderland‘

Harrison A Mad Tea-Party

Mozart Clarinet Quintet K 581


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

Come along to hear the premiere of my latest sextet for Ensemble Offspring, Bend/Boogie/Break, as well as new works by Tristan Coelho and Alex Pozniak. That’s three world premieres of Australian works in one night – a hat trick!  Bend/Boogie/Break also features distorted keyboard and a guitar pedal – it’s going to be fun. . . .  

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Details:

September 29, 7pm, Music Workshop, Sydney Conservatorium

Tickets available at: https://www.stickytickets.com.au/71117/spectral_tech.aspx

Shards of sound and jagged rhythms envelop your ears and tickle your feet as Ensemble Offspring brings to life the wild and uncompromising squiggles of local composers Alex Pozniak, Tristan Coelho and Holly Harrison.

With sound worlds so distinctive, we needed to coin a new name for their music. We’re calling it “Spectral Tech”. The virtuosic musicians of Ensemble Offspring get down and dirty with these three premieres alongside an ensemble favourite.

Harrison Bend/Boogie/Break (world premiere)

Coehlo A Line if a Dot That Went for a Walk - solo vibraphone - (world premiere)

Pozniak En Masse (world premiere)

Murail Thirteen Colours of the Setting Sun (1978)


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

I’m absolutely delighted to announce that Eighth Blackbird have been awarded Performance of the Year at the 2018 Art Music Awards for their performance of my work, Lobster Tales and Turtle Soup.

A brief comment from the jury: ‘The rhythmic and technical demands of this delightful work are amply met in this performance of panache and flair with precision and wit.’

Congratulations, Eighth Blackbird. It was exciting to catch up with percussionist Matthew Duvall too! Here’s a few shots from the night. All photos by Tegan Louise.


Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison

The wonderful Melbourne-based group, Rubiks, have now returned from their 2018 European tour. I’m excited that they programmed Lobster Tales and Turtle Soup, performing it alongside works by Samantha Wolf, Samuel Smith, and Jacob Abela, in Darmstadt, Berlin, Manchester, and Amsterdam. Many thanks to Rubiks for championing an entire program of new music by Aussie composers!

Samuel Smith Species
Holly Harrison Lobster Tales and Turtle Soup
Jacob Abela Fixations
Samantha Wolf Want Not

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Posted
AuthorHolly Harrison