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Sonic Bothy Updates July 2021

New Work

Sonic Bothy Ensemble produced a new digital work Verbaaaaatum for Tectonics Festival 2021. The festival was online for a month and hosted a fantastic array of digital and streamed music/sound performances. View the archive of the 2021 Tectonics Festival online at Tectonics Glasgow 2021

Hats off to Claire and all at Sonic Bothy for how everything has continued to grow and develop since the first lockdown hit in March 2020. In spite of the challenges, we’ve being actively involved in staying creatively connected to participants/musicians and producing new work, and it’s a joy.

Scottish Awards for New Music

Exciting that Sonic Bothy was shortlisted for The RCS Award for Education/Community Project at New Music Scotland. The awards were announced in an online event in July 2021 – congratulations to the winners. Read more about the category and shortlisted projects here…The RCS Award for Education/Community Project

Sonic Bothy Ensemble Album Fields

Sonic Bothy Ensemble’s debut album Fields is still available at Bandcamp in hard copy and digital formats…

https://sonicbothy.bandcamp.com/album/fields

More Information

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website.

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Stolen Voices at CCA

stolen voices nichola scrutton 1
Photo © Alan Davidson

stolen voices nichola scrutton 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Necessary Notes: A Vocal Response  – solo performance as part of the Stolen Voices album launch on 8th February 2020.

Review

“Nichola Scrutton is, as ever, an absolute wonder- her voice can disarm, charm and bewitch….She takes the listener into otherwordly realms, an uncertain space between sleep and consciousness.” (The Tempohouse)

Read the full review by Lorna Irvine.

The album launch was part of a creative research project by Rebecca Collins and Johanna Linsley – more here. The event forms part of ‘The Sonic Study Series: Act I Sonic Practice’ and is a pop-up event for the Festival of Creative Learning 2020, University of Edinburgh. Many thanks to Rebecca and Johanna for the invitation. More info about the event at  CCA Stolen Voices.

 

 

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Sonic Bothy Updates March 2020

Sonic Bothy Ensemble at TUSK Festival 2019

Performances

Sonic Bothy Ensemble Platform
SBE at Platform Glasgow (image © Brian Hartley/Sonic Bothy)

Sonic Bothy Ensemble enjoyed wonderful performances at TUSK Festival in October 2019 (photo above © Sonic Bothy) and at Platform Glasgow in December 2019.

Gateshead Jazz Festival – Covid-19 affected

Tectonics Festival – Covid-19 affected

Sonic Bothy Ensemble had two very exciting performances in the pipe-line – one in late March at The Sage, Gateshead for Gateshead Jazz Festival and one in early May at Tectonics, Old Fruitmarket. Unfortunately both were cancelled or postponed due to lockdown.

Meanwhile Sonic Bothy has resumed some rehearsals online. More news about future events will follow as and when available.

Performance Anxiety Research Project

Since September 2019 I have been Lead Artist on the development of Sonic Bothy’s Performance Anxiety Project, along with Creative Director Claire Docherty (Project Manager) and Malcy Duff who works with Bothy Learning Space (Support Artist). At the core of the project was a series of exploratory workshops, co-led with Malcy. The project aims, through direct experience in workshops, consultation and research, to increase awareness and create resources to support musicians with an ALSN in any aspect of performance anxiety and associated issues. The project has been detailed in an extensive research report, written up at the end of the practical work.

Sonic Bothy Ensemble Album Fields

Sonic Bothy Ensemble’s debut album Fields is still available at Bandcamp in hard copy and digital formats…

More Information

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website.

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Sonic Bothy Updates Oct 2019

Review – Sonic Bothy Ensemble: Immediate Buzz Shift, CCA, Glasgow

Image © Brian Hartley

 

“Part of the wonder of Sonic Bothy is that each night is individual as a finger print. So it is with Immediate Buzz Shift.” (The Tempohouse)

Read the SBE CCA Review

Performances

Sonic Bothy Ensemble are next performing at TUSK Festival at The Sage in Gateshead, which is very exciting! We’ll be in Hall 2 at 7:10pm on Sunday 13th October 2019.

In June 2019 we had a fantastic time performing at the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery…Also in June we also had  a wonderful time recording some new work in the studio at Gorbals Sound, Glasgow.

Sonic Bothy Ensemble Debut Album

Sonic Bothy Ensemble’s debut album Fields is available at Bandcamp…

More Information

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website.

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Residency at Q-O2 in Brussels

Q-O2 residency
Portrait photo © Wendy Kirkup.

I was delighted to be selected for a residency at Q-O2 in Brussels for two weeks May/June 2019. See more info at Q-O2. Part of my priority was to reflect on Night Vision – a new work-in-progress originally developed at Rough Mix Residency with Magnetic North Theatre Company. While I was there I also made some recordings, explored some visual artwork as an extension of the Night Vision text and, and gave an improvised performance with cellist Arnold Noid Haberl as part of a public sharing at the Q-O2 space.

Many thanks indeed to all at Q-O2!

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Sonic Bothy Updates April 2019

Sonic Bothy Ensemble Performances

The next performance is at CCA, Glasgow on 26th April 2019. More details at Sonic Bothy’s Facebook page.

Article in The List magazine

Sonic Bothy article The List

Read the article at the link below…

https://www.list.co.uk/article/107892-sonic-bothy-aims-to-explore-glasgows-new-and-experimental-music-scene-as-a-source-of-dialogue-and-inspiration/

Review of SBE Album at Scots Whae Hae

Sonic Bothy album review Scots Whae Hae

Here’s a link to the review online – scroll down the page to find Sonic Bothy’s album write up…

Scots Whae Hae New Musical Success

More Information

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website.

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Sonic Bothy Ensemble Album Launch

Sonic Bothy inclusive new music ensemble I work with launched its debut album Fields with a performance at Mono in Glasgow on 28th February 2019.  The album was recorded near the end of 2017 at Riverside Studios. Read more at Lost Art Agency and at Glasgow City Music Tours…The album is available at Bandcamp.

More Information

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website.

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Night Vision – a body of work

Night Vision Nichola Scrutton

Night Vision (working title) is a body of work in development.

The starting point was a series of texts captured in the middle of the night lying down in a semi-conscious state over a two-year period (2017-19). This was a new approach for me as a composer.

Many thanks to writer Em Strang – an early reader of a random, unfiltered selection of the texts. Em’s generous response gave me encouragement to trust my instincts in pursuing the work. 

Early inquiries focused on investigating the text, making selections and initial thoughts about how to interact with the texts in performance.  In 2019, I had the opportunity to explore those seed ideas in a Magnetic North Rough Mix Residency. The work-in-progress was aired in a public performance at Perth Theatre, Scotland.

2021 Developments

I am delighted to say  that in early 2021 I was awarded Creative Scotland funding to develop the next phase of the project over a six month period. A few threads are now unfolding, including a more substantial ensemble work for performance (which takes the title Night Vision), as well as a solo recording project, drawings/visual compositions, and micro-commissions. 

I will link to more information here in the coming months, and I’m posting occasional updates on social media – you can connect there too if it’s of interest, details are on the Contact page…

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Sonic Bothy Updates 2018

181105 Sonic Bothy Diagonal JoyPerformance

Sonic Bothy Ensemble and Bothy Learning Space joined forces for some intensive rehearsals and a big performance, Diagonal Joy, in the Recital Room at City Halls in November 2018.

NominationSonic Bothy ISME 2016 at RCS photo © SB

Everyone’s excited that Sonic Bothy inclusive new music ensemble has been nominated for a Scottish Award For New Music.

More Information

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website.

 

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When Night Comes

When Night Comes 4When Night Comes 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

When Night Comes was a solo performance created in dialogue with Wendy Kirkup’s film from a score (2017). In the film I perform Berio’s Sequenza III for solo voice. After Wendy’s films were selected to be screened at the 5th Edition of the Beton 7 Festival in Athens, Greece in 2018, I was invited to perform at the opening as a response to the film prior to the screening on the opening night of the festival. My improvised performance drew inspiration and gestures from both my knowledge of Berio’s score and the compositional and material aesthetic of the film itself. The title is a play on a fragment of text from Berio’s  score – “before night comes”.

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Rough Breathing | Alex South

Through the Rough Breathing project I have been collaborating with clarinettist Alex South to investigate the role and use of breath as an improvising tool in live performance. Our collaborative exploration to date has focused on a) the psychoacoustic and sonic relationships between voice and clarinet, and b) breath and bodily breathing processes as potential material and/or structural devices within free improvisation. One line of inquiry, for example, centres on how the breath might sculpt the dynamic flow of sound-making in performance.

With early exploratory performances at The Glad Cafe and Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre (many thanks John Cavanagh), the work was further supported and developed through a CCA/AC Projects Residency in the Creative Lab at CCA 2018  and Tectonics Festival 2019.

In 2020, Rough Breathing was shortlisted for the Scottish Awards for New Music Ism Prize for Collaboration.

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Sonic Bothy Inclusive New Music

I am delighted to have been working with Sonic Bothy  Ensemble since January 2014. Sonic Bothy was founded by creative director Claire Docherty, and explores, composes and performs experimental and contemporary music.

I post occasional updates – read more in News or click on the Sonic Bothy tag.

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website

 

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Sonic Bothy Updates 2017

Sonic Bothy Review

Sonic Bothy Glass-instruments
Photo courtesy of Sonic Bothy.

Sonic Bothy Ensemble’s first gig of 2017 at Mono in Glasgow gets a wonderful review from The Cusp Magazine. Read the full review here

Sonic Bothy recording 1

Sonic Bothy Ensemble have been in residence at Riverside studios recording tracks for a forth coming album.

Paritor Award – Sonic Bothy was one of several Glasgow Life/City Council partnered projects submitted to the National Music Council Awards, and received the Paritor Award for New Music in Education. Read more about the Paritor Award and other winners at the National Music Council website.

Sonic Bothy Ensemble, Sound Festival

Performances include: Recital Rooms, City Halls, Glasgow, Mono, Glasgow, CCA, Glasgow, UNLIMITED, Tramway, Glasgow, ISME conference, RCS, Glasgow, SOUND Festival, Aberdeen, Atelier Public #2, GoMA, Glasgow, Counterflows Festival, The Glad Café, Glasgow

More Information

For more information on Sonic Bothy Ensemble, and all the charity’s activities, please visit Sonic Bothy’s website.

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BBC Radio 3 Exposure

Exposure GigI was delighted to be performing solo on the first programme of a new BBC Radio 3 series – Exposure. The programme ‘explores the local alternative and underground music scenes’.

The live event is on 23rd September 2016 in Glasgow at the Glad Cafe. The programme will be broadcast on 29th September at 11 pm and available online for a month.

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At First Light

At First Light listener
At First Light listener – WISWOS, LICA

At First Light  is a studio composition (8’49). Arising from an ongoing strand of exploration around ideas of ‘ephemeral’,  At First Light is a vocal meditation  inspired by the play of light at sunrise and a notion that each moment may be filled with the past, present and future. The process of making the piece involved repeated exploration of the material ideas using a simple MAXMSP patch, with the final work being created in a single real-time improvisation. While a version of the piece was ultimately fixed to become At First Light, inherent in the process and the material is an idea of transient evolution – emergence, cycle and decay.

The piece was selected for:

Women in Sound/Women on Sound‘ Symposium at Lancaster Institute for Contemporary Arts (LICA) (2015)
New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival Concert 35 (NYCEMF) (2016)
Tomorrow, Today will be Yesterday‘ group installation at CAAA, Guimaraes, Portugal, ELO, Victoria BC, Canada, and LCGA, Limerick, Ireland as part of the Screen Dance Festival.

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Phoenix Dance Theatre | Choreographers and Composers Lab

I was absolutely delighted to be one of four composers selected for the Choreographers and Composers Lab 2015 – a two-week intensive residency with Phoenix Dance Theatre in Leeds. The residency was led by  Sharon Watson and Ken Hesketh, with guest speakers – Robert Cohan, Peter Weigold, Zoé Martlew, Dr Jo Butterworth, Mike Dixon, Didy Veldman.

Choreographers: Adrienne Hart, Mbulelo Ndabeni, Claire Lefèvre and Sandrine Monin.
Composers: Roberto David Rusconi, Nichola Scrutton, Sarah Westwood and Eloise Gynn.
Dancers:  Hannah Bateman, Francesca Caselli, Andreas Grimaldier, Joshua  Harriette, Carmen Marfil, Marie Astrid Mence, Ben Mitchell, Vanessa Pang, Alice Shepherdson, Sam Vaherlehto , Prentice Whitlow.
Musicians: Hara Alonso, Oliver  Dover, Sean  Hamilton, Becky Yen-Huan

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Teaching Fellow University of Glasgow

After being awarded my PhD from University of Glasgow I worked as a Teaching Fellow in Music there for two years.

Glasgow Unesco City of Music

2009-2011 University of Glasgow (Music)
Teaching Fellow (0.6 fte)

In brief, areas of work included:

Sonic Arts Levels II and III;
Practice-based Composition Workshops;
Contemporary Music Ensemble;
Lectures in Music and Technology;
Advising UG Dissertations and students on the MLitt in Popular Music Studies (Creative Practice);
First GLEAM concert organiser and host;
Music Education Project Organiser;
Course Administration.

2004-2009  University of Glasgow (Music):
Graduate Teaching Assistant

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Songs for a Stranger

Songs for a Stranger - SolitudeSongs for a Stranger is a collection or cycle of five electroacoustic works that draws metaphorical inspiration from the many senses of the word ‘stranger’.

Everyone feels like a stranger sometimes – when travelling somewhere new; returning home; confronting solitude. Some feel estranged in close intimacy; others find connection through anonymity.

Songs for a Stranger movements:

i  A Fragile Memory (4’40)
ii  Blowing In (5′)
iii  Solitude (4’26)
iv  I Said You Said (5′)
v  In the Midst (4’39)

The piece was premiered in the intimate ‘dark space’ at The Arches LIVE! Festival in September 2011, performed and diffused over a 4-channel speaker system. I invited Swiss vocalist Céline Hänni to rehearse and perform the work for Arches Live. Sound diffusion: Graeme Truslove. Many thanks indeed to all at The Arches.

Songs for a Stranger was further supported by a Creative Scotland Quality Arts Production Award.

 

 

 

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The Dwelling Series

The Dwelling Series - Nichola Scrutton

The Dwelling Series (2010) is a triptych of vocal works. Multiple concepts arising from the notion of the title Dwelling gave rise to an interactive process of improvising and recording with MAXMSP, through which I sought to explore a sense of ‘inhabiting’ the work. As inspiration for generating improvised material under this complex umbrella concept of ‘dwelling’ I used three general metaphors to articulate events or states: dust (nature), cycle (flow/journey) and echo (memory).

The compositional process consisted of creating successive  vocal improvisations, which were merged together, fully intact, after each improvisation was captured. Manipulation of the captured improvisations was strictly limited to the editing of gestures and textures in time and space to enhance or magnify relationships/conflicts that emerged by chance as each layer was added.

(i) Dwelling/In Dialogue: studio composition (17′). Listen

(ii) Dwelling/Encounters: pre-composed sound and live performance, in which two live performers merged and improvised with a pre-composed soundtrack projected through multiple loud speakers.  Swiss vocalist Céline Hänni and I undertook a short intensive residency to explore extended technique vocal improvisation that culminated in the final performance. (12’30). Listen

(iii) Dwelling/In Reflection: live interactive solo performance (18′). Listen

 

 

 

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Academic Awards

Academic Awards and Qualifications

PhD in Electroacoustic Composition – portfolio ‘Hearing Voices’  – University of Glasgow (graduation Nov 2009)
Funded by an Arts and Humanities Research Council Award – selected from open competition (2005 – 08)

MMus in Composition – University of Glasgow (2004 – 05)
Supported by a Bellahouston Scholarship and a Broomhill Scholarship 

BMus (Hons) First Class –University of Glasgow (2004)
The Goudie Prize ‘Most Distinguished BMus Hons Graduate’.