Address: Vancouver, BC Canada

Presenters

Andrew Lawrence-King

Andrew Lawrence-King, renowned baroque-harp virtuoso and imaginative continuo-player, is recognised as one of the world's leading performers of early music. A creative and inspiring conductor who directs from one of several continuo instruments (including harp, organ, harpsichord & psaltery), he has led baroque operas and oratorios at La Scala, Milan; Sydney Opera House; Casals Hall, Tokyo; Berlin Philharmonie; Vienna Konzerthaus; New York's Carnegie Hall; and Mexico City's Palacio de Bellas Artes. In 1994 Andrew Lawrence-King formed his own ensemble, The Harp Consort, and was immediately signed up by Deutsche Harmonia Mundi for a seven-year series of solo and ensemble recordings. The Harp Consort now records exclusively for Harmonia Mundi USA, and their first HMU release is "Missa Mexicana": festive music and popular dances from 17th-century Mexico. Andrew Lawrence-King is principal guest director of the Florentine baroque ensemble, L'Homme Armé, specialising in early baroque opera & oratorio, and his work on 17th-century dances with Steven Player & The Harp Consort has won the ensemble an unparalleled reputation for stylish and entertaining stage-shows.

 

Paul Hillier

Paul Hillier is currently Professor of Music and director of the Early Music Institute at Indiana University. He is also Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, and Chief Conductor of Ars Nova (Denmark). After co-founding and directing the Hilliard Ensemble for many years, he moved in 1990 to the USA where he created a group called Theatre of Voices. With this new group and also as a solo singer he has made a series of more than twenty CD recordings for Harmonia Mundi USA, ranging from medieval monody to contemporary choral music. He is author of "Arvo Paert" (OUP 1997) and editor of "Steve Reich - Writings On Music" (OUP 2002), and is currently working on a book about words and music. His interest in ballads and in all forms of contrafacta (fitting new words to old melodies) stems from this work and has already born fruit in a number of CD collaborations with the harpist Andrew Lawrence-King. At this year's conference in Cambridge he will talk about some aspects of his research which are germane to the topic of narration and which shed additional light on the music he will be performing.

 

Else Torp

Else Torp started to study music and singing professioanally at the University of Copenhagen, after she completed her M.A.. She first studied privately with Sten Hoegel and Bodil Oeland and participated in master classes with Emma Kirkby, Lars Ulrik Mortensen, and Paul Hillier. She is a founding member of the Raphaelis Consort directed by Roskilde Cathedral organist Kristian Olesen. The ensemble specialises in the music of Francois Couperin, Dietrich Buxtehude and J.S. Bach, performing about 25 concerts a year with tours in Scandinavia, Poland and Austria planned for 2002. Else Torp has sung as a soloist with numerous ensembles including the baroque orchestra "ConStrumenti", and since 1996 she has appeared with Vocal Group Ars Nova on several occasions in Europe, South America and Africa. Else Torp has recorded Monteverdi's "Christmas Vespers", and a CD of Telemann's Danish Cantatas; further recording projects in preparation include two CDs of works by Buxtehude and one devoted to early Italian baroque music. Else Torp will present two aspects of her work joining Paul Hillier in concert and speaking on Symphonic Fairytales as coordinator of the project.

 

Symphonic Fairytales is the first Danish initiative with international perspective in celebrating Hans Christian Andersen's 200th anniversary in 2005. With strong support from The Danish Royal Ministry of Culture and SAMFUNDET, known as The Society for the Publication of Danish Music, Symphonic Fairytales is celebrating the 200th anniversary of Hans Christian Andersen's birth. The objective of Symphonic Fairytales is that 10 specially commissioned orchestral works based on stories and poems by Hans Christian Andersen will be premiered at concerts throughout the world. Negotiations involve leading symphony orchestras in four continents. Symphonic Fairytales' composers are: Per Nørgård, Ib Nørholm, Niels Wilhelm Pedersen, Bent Lorentzen, Sven Erik Werner, Jesper Koch, Morten Olsen, Svend E. Nielsen, John Frandsen and Svend Hvidtfelt Nielsen. And some of stories are: The Snow Queen, The Tinder-Box, Thumbelina, the The Will-o'-the-Wisps are in Town, and The Travelling Companion. info@symphonicfairytales.com

  

Rita Costanzi

Rita Costanzi, heralded as an "artist of immense gifts" continues to captivate audiences with the conviction, warmth and exquisite virtuosity of her harp playing. Recipient of the Lily Laskine Award, the ITT International Fellowship and twice the winner of the American Harp Society Competition, she has performed at the Tanglewood, Marlboro and Chautauqua Festivals, at the Sixth World Harp Congress and as a concerto soloist with orchestras across North America. Highly acclaimed for her outstanding musicianship and extensive repertoire, she pursues an active solo, chamber music and recording career. Her three compact discs, "Pastorales de Noël", "A Ceremony of Carols" (a collaboration with the Elektra Women's Choir) and her newest solo CD, "Of Fields and Forests", a CBC production, receive great critical acclaim.www.ritacostanzi.com

 

Don Mowatt

Don Mowatt, Canadian author, having devoted his life to literature, creative writing, theatre and film as a university lecturer, radio producer and performing artist, has won many awards of distinction throughout Canada and the U.S.A. Don Mowatt will be introducing his work "The Collected Silences of David's Mother" (2000) at the beginning of the conference.

 

The Collected Silences of David's Mother (2000) by Don Mowatt was especially composed for harpist Rita Costanzi. "The Collected Silences of David's Mother" is a monodrama set in the desert community where the historical King David grew up. It is a story told from the point of view of David's mother, who, the author imagines, taught David to play the harp and influenced his poetical and spiritual direction. The play is a series of stories and meditations on self-discovery, listening for the voice of God, accepting God's long silences and showing compassion for the troubles of others. It aims to be both art and meditation, reflecting on the words of Judaism, Islam and Christianity. This piece combines images, sayings, metaphors and points of reference from all three Abrahamic religions.

 

Janet Harbison

Janet Harbison is heralded by Mary McAleese, the President of Ireland, as "One of Ireland's most accomplished women, a charismatic leader, a cherished teacher, a quintessential performer and a comedienne." For thirty years and more, Janet has enjoyed an international career of performance on the Irish Harp. She has evolved a style of playing and teaching that is unique and brings the ancient tradition of Irish harping into the modern day. She has received widespread recognition for her work with numerous national and international awards from arts and governmental institutions and in 1999, was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Ulster. Although born and raised in Dublin in the mid '50s, her heritage and family is from the heart of Ulster. She came to settle in Belfast in 1984 and found a particular relevance for her skills, abilities and energy. Her portfolio of activities includes being a widely experienced stage performer, recording artist and composer; an educator in many contexts from a private lessons to conference masterclasses, an academic authority on the style and repertoire, political and social history of Irish harpers and their patrons through the ages. From 1986 to 1994, she worked as the Curator of Music in the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum, in which Ulster's cultural heritage is presented. Her broad and intimate understanding of Ulster's history and cultural heritage, and her will to contribute to the peace and reconciliation environment in the community, inspired her work and motivation to work with young people in Northern Ireland from both backgrounds. This led to the idea of setting up harp schools all over the province, raising money to buy instruments, spending a great deal of her time over a period of ten years teaching and motivating, and in 1992, the Belfast Harp Orchestra took to the stage. Within the first year, Janet's orchestra of harps had toured Ireland, the UK, Europe and the US, performed with the Chieftains in the world's top venues (including the Carnegie Hall, New York, the Kennedy Centre in Washington DC and London's Royal Festival Hall), won a Grammy Award, and to date have recorded or been featured on 11 albums. The Irish Harp Orchestra is the grown up version of the Belfast Harp Orchestra, featuring young professional players at the cusp of their performance careers. The orchestra has already spawned a number of international harping stars including Michael Rooney, Grainne Hambly and Paul Dooley who have risen to prominence in recent times. Other ex-members of Janet's teaching schools include Laoise Kelly and other well known names who are animating the ancient tradition of harping into the next generations. www.irishharpcompany.com

 

Katherine Thomas

Katherine Thomas graduated from the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London, in 1996. At College she studied the harp with David Watkins. She has been a recipient of Scholarships from the Welsh Arts Council and the Countess of Munster Musical Trust. These enabled her to continue her studies with Edward Witsenburg in Holland. From Pontypridd, Wales, Katherine has received several prizes in competitions and festivals - including the World Harp Festival in Cardiff and the Blue Riband at the National Eisteddfod. She was also awarded the Nansi Richards Scholarship and the Alwena Roberts Memorial Scholarship. Katherine frequently performs solo recitals and has given performances at the Spitalfields Festival and at Southwark Cathedral in London. From 1997-99 Katherine was also a participant in the Countess of Munster Recital Scheme. She has performed with chamber groups including the Brunel Ensemble and Music Theatre Wales and has been a participant at the Recontres Musicales Festivals in France - organized by harpist Marielle Nordmann. She is currently a member of the Bay Trio. Katherine frequently works with orchestras including the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Welsh National Opera and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Abroad she has worked with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Gothenburg Opera Company and has performed at the Evian and Spoleto Opera Festivals. Katherine currently holds the position of Principal Harp at Genoa Opera House.

 

Lynne Kirk

Lynne Kirk has told many stories over the years, but during the last decade has concentrated on storytelling to the adult population. She has run two story clubs in York and Malton, completed a training at Emerson College and has performed at schools and festivals. One particular highlight in her professional work is taking storytelling journeys/pilgrims of  groups to the Sinai Dessert and along the pipeline to Lapland. Lynne has also been Director of the Society of Storytelling in the UK. At "The Harp: Music and the Oral Tradition" Lynne will be opening the conference performing "Celtic Tales the Bards Relate" and running storytelling workshops titled "Giving Voice to Story" where we will be working on stories from the oral tradition. Lynne has taught in Steiner education for 19 years.

 

Okeanos

Okeanos, a young, dynamic and flexible ensemble, is fast gaining a reputation for imaginative programming and innovative new music projects. The ensemble is committed to raising awareness of new music, often in a collaborative context. Presenting a programme of new works centering around the harp, Okeanos includes oboist: Virginia Shaw; harpist: Lucy Wakeford; clarinetist: Kate Romano; viola player: Bridget Carey and soprano: Sally Bradshaw. Okeanos aspires to create a unique and highly distinctive sound in the sphere of music. Okeanos will premiere works which expressly use the theme of story-telling: Judith Weir's 'Really ?', Julian Broughton's 'The Fountain by the Wood' and Nicola LeFanu's 'Mira Clar Tenebras'. Other works especially written for the group include Howard Skempton's 'Horizons', Judith Bingham's 'The Island of Patmos', new works by Kate Waring and Kate Romano, and Ivor McGregor's 'Quadrilles' which describe scenes from Alice in Wonderland. Elizabeth Maconchy's fiery 'Reflections' finishes the programme.

 

Virginia Shaw

Virginia Shaw (oboe, oboe d'amore, cor anglais) was joint first prize winner of the 1995 Isle of Wight International Oboe Competition. As the founding member of the new music collective Okeanos, she has co-ordinated projects at Wingfield Arts, York, Bristol, East Anglia and Manchester Universities, including a tour of new Japanese chamber music as part of Japan 2001. She has commissioned and premiered works from Philip Grange, Michael Clarke, Keely Hodgson, Geoffrey Poole and Luca Belcastro. She has given the world premiere of John McCabe's Oboe Concerto. At the Millenium Three Choirs Festival in Hereford Cathedral she gave the world premiere of Kenneth Leighton's Concerto for Oboe and Strings with Paul Daniel and the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.

 

Lucy Wakeford

Lucy Wakeford is one of the most outstanding harpists of her generation. She is much in demand as a soloist, recitalist and ensemble player. Born in Surrey in 1972, Lucy Wakeford studied with Daphne Boden and Marisa Robles at the Royal College of Music and with Gerard Devos in Paris and Skaila Kanga in London. During her studies Lucy won top prizes at numerous national and international competitions including 1st prize at the 1996 Charpentier Competition held in Paris, 1st prize at the 1991 World Harp Festival Competition in Cardiff and 2nd prize at the 1988 Tenth International Harp Competition in Israel. As a concerto soloist Lucy has appeared with the London Symphony Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Israel Symphony Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra, among many others. She has recorded the Mozart Flute & Harp Concerto with the Britten Sinfonia for the BMG Conifer label. Lucy was chosen for representation by YCAT in May 1998.

 

Graeme Lawson

Graeme Lawson PhD is Director of Archaeologia Musica, Cambridge, and a Fellow of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at Cambridge University. Research archaeologist, instrument-maker, composer and performer, he has pioneered the archaeology of music and musicians since 1973. During that time he has worked to establish a special place for music in the archaeology of our human past, while simultaneously revealing archaeology's fundamental importance for our knowledge of how music came to be as we know it today. The results of his scientific research strongly inform his creative output as performer and composer. Harping traditions, harpers and harps themselves have long been a particular interest, forming one of the themes of his PhD (Cambridge 1980). In this lively performance Graeme Lawson will illustrate new discoveries and show how they add to our understanding of the nature and origins of musical tradition, of the old Anglo-Saxon harper-poets, and ultimately of music itself.

 

Peter Hilken

Peter Hilken read English Literature and Language at Oxford and then completed an  MA at London in Educatonal Planning in Developing Countries, before starting work for the British Council. He spent 30 years abroad in Africa, India, the Middle East and Latin America, a rich cultural exposure, which engendered a very strong interest in storytelling and the oral tradition of the peoples he encountered. Since 1996 Peter has been working as a professional Storyteller founding and chairing the Cambridge Story Tellers. During the past two years Peter has spent 150 hours story-telling at Fulbourne Hospital. Peter works in collaboration with a musician Penny Lutoslawska, enriching the lives of many by taking their art out into the community. Peter will be drawing from his own experience in the local community speaking specifically on "Transformation and Recreation of Myth in the Modern World."

 

Kosmos: Eurythmy West Midlands: Elien Hofmans, Breeda Mannix, Maren Stott

Kosmos: Eurythmy West Midlands: Elien Hofmans, Breeda Mannix, Maren Stott is an exciting new eurythmy ensemble, committed to the interpretation and realization of contemporary live music and speech through movement. Kosmos has developed a distinctive style in eurythmy, which seeks to present in movement the creative forces of the spoken word and musical sound. Central to the vision of Kosmos, is a dedicated policy of commissioning new works from gifted artists and bringing eurythmy to wider audiences. Maren Stott came to England in 1982 as a professional eurythmist. Besides teaching in two eurythmy trainings and giving adult classes, she has performed and toured with Ashdown Eurythmy, The Anderida Ensemble, The London Eurythmy Stage Group, Eurythmy West Midlands; directed eurythmy with Portal Productions and has recently co-founded the new project-group Kosmos.

 

Anne Ayre

Anne Ayre retired from Kings Langley Steiner School in June 2000, after 21 years of teaching music. She directed music throughout the the school, which involved class singing and ensembles, school choir and orchestra and stage productions. Extensive work with parents and teachers kept music standards high. Anne Ayre has also taught for many years in the London Waldorf Teacher Training Seminar at Steiner House, where she is still very active. Anne Ayre is working with the Cambridge Music Conference to enich the quality of music thoughout Steiner Schools in Great Britain.

 

The European Council for Steiner Waldorf Education

The European Council for Steiner Waldorf Education is a collaborative organization for some 550 Waldorf schools in 18 European countries. The 120 Waldorf schools in North America are also affiliated members. Its role is the development of Waldorf education on an international basis through political, cultural and educational activities and research. It represents the schools at a European level, develops teacher training, initiates international projects with pupils, provides a forum for national comparisons and support, and creates links with other educational bodies with similar views and values. It is also working to improve the quality of childhood world-wide and is a partner in the Alliance for Childhood. Christopher Clouder chairs the European Council for Steiner Waldorf Education.

Composers

Judith Weir

Judith Weir's music has been based on narrative and storytelling traditions from around the world, including Icelandic Saga (King Harald's Saga) Gaelic folk stories (The Vanishing Bridegroom) German Romantic literature (Blond Eckbert, Heaven Ablaze) and Chinese philosophy (Natural History, The Consolations of Scholarship). Since 1996 Judith Weir has collaborated with storyteller Vayu Naidu on performances which bring together Indian and Western musicians; a recent programme entitled Future Perfect, which toured England for a month in 2000, will visit India at the end of 2002. Judith has also contributed musical scenes to new plays by Caryl Churchill and Peter Shaffer; and she recently collaborated with writers Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison and Clarissa Pinkola Estes on a "Œmusical life story" commissioned by Jessye Norman.
The world premiere of Judith Weir's new work "Really ?" (2002) was especially written for Okeanos.

 

Howard Skempton

Howard Skempton, British composer, will be returning to Cambridge Music Conference to speak on his own recent work, "Horizons", composed especially for harp virtuoso Lucy Wakeford and oboist Jinny Shaw of Okeanos. He will also be present to facilitate discussion with Judith Weir in whose music he takes a special interest. Howard Skempton has composed at least 300 pieces, a large number of which are small-scale works for solo piano, which he describes as the central nervous system of his work. Several of these pieces, arranged for harp, appeared on Paul Hillier and Andrew Laurence-King's CD entitled "Bitter Ballads". His most recent commission is a large-scale work (settings of "The Song of Songs") for the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, directed by Paul Hillier. His work was featured at the Norfolk and Norwich Festival in 1997 and in Bratislava in 1998. He is currently Visiting Professor of Music at De Montfort University.

 

Kate Waring

Kate Waring, composer, conductor, flutist, teacher, producer of concerts, festivals and charity events, was born in Louisiana, U.S.A. She has written more than a hundred works, which have received recognition through live performance, radio and television recordings in Europe and North America. Her academic studies culminated in a doctorate from the Sorbonne in Paris. Waring's musical A*B*C*America Before Columbus, her chamber opera Rapunzel and her multi-media song cycle Remember the Earth Whose Skin You Are with texts by Native Americans have received numerous performances on both sides of the Atlantic. In Germany, she was founder and artistic director of the American Music Week for a decade with yearly events including opera, musicals, modern dance etc in Bonn, Cologne, Berlin, Siegburg, Cleves and Aachen. She was appointed artistic director of the International Festival of Women's Music and the Fanny Mendelssohn Composition Competition in 1995. Her works are published by Tonger Editions and Dohr Editions in Cologne, Germany, and by I.E. Clark, Inc. in Texas. Since moving to England four years ago, she has devoted her time to compostion. She serves on the board of Action for Children's Arts and is presently writing the music for a multi-media ballet commissioned by the Folkwang Musikhochschule in Essen, Germany. Kate Waring's "Mythical Moments" (2002) and "Immortal Words" (2002) were commissioned by Cambridge Music Conference to celebrate the metaphysical ideals of the harp and narrative and narrative at the heart of this year's event.