Purcell alumna Mica Levi's score for Under The Skin was one of five soundtracks nominated at the BAFTAs last night for Best Original Music; the talented composer also recently won the European Film Award for Best Composer.
Levi, 27, was working on a third album with her band, Michachu and the Shapes, when she was asked to work with film-maker Jonathan Glazer on Under The Skin. The film, featuring Scarlett Johansson became one of the most critically acclaimed films of the year.
Levi studied at The Purcell School from the age of nine, and then went on to the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Her score has been compared by critics to the work of avant-garde composers such as Krzysztof Penderecki and Gyorgi Ligeti, who were used frequently by Stanley Kubrick, and her score brings together strings, percussion, distortions in speed and clashing microphones.
It was great to see alumna Anne Denholm in the latest issue of Classical Music Magazine. Anne is part of
The Hermes Experiment, a quartet of young musicians who are passionate about contemporary and experimental music. The group comprises Héloïse Werner (soprano), Oliver Pashley (clarinet), Marianne Schofield (double bass) and Anne Denholm (harp), who met whilst studying music at Cambridge University.
Described as "unapologetically adventurous and fearless" (Nonclassical), the ensemble is dedicated to creating music which is innovative and unique. Capitalising on their deliberately idiosyncratic combination of instruments, they perform a variety of experimental compositions and arrangements, as well as venturing into live free improvisation. The ensemble also seeks to promote and collaborate with composers, regularly commissioning new works for the ensemble.
Anne was at The Purcell School from 2007 to 2009, before continuing her musical studies at Cambridge University and the Royal Academy of Music, where she currently holds a Headley Trust Award and the John Thomas Scholarship.
The Hermes Experiment will be visiting The Purcell School to give a workshop in March.
The School Chamber Choir, conducted by Edward Longstaff gave a lunchtime concert at St. Paul's Cathedral today. A magnificent setting for the programme of unaccompanied sacred works; they performed Purcell's I was glad, Allegri's famous Miserere mei Deus and three works by Pierre Villette: Hymne à la Vierge, Jesu, dulcis memoria and Panis angelicus.
The Purcell School was delighted and proud to receive two very special guests on Wednesday 28th January.
Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, formerly Master of the Queen’s Music, and Dr. Anthony Gilbert, who created the UK’s first conservatoire Composition Department with Sir John Manduell in the 1970s, both came to help celebrate Nineteen Thirty Four, a special concert dedicated to the year of their birth.
Alison Cox – Head of Composition, writes more here.