Composer Cat Lamb’s Work Premiered by BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra

Berlin-based composer Catherine Lamb (Music BFA 06) received a World Premiere of her orchestral work Portions transparent/opaque last month by the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (BBC SSO). A two-minute excerpt of the piece is posted above via BBC Radio 3 and is available for streaming this week through Saturday (June 14).

Conducted by Ilan Volkov, the BBC SSO performed the piece during the last week of the 2014 Tectonics Glasgow Festival (May 9-11), featuring new works curated by Volkov and Alasdair Campbell. The program also included compositions by James Clapperton, Klaus Lang and an excerpt from a set by Japanese experimentalist Takehisa Kosugi.

The piece was also performed in a more relaxed listening setting on Sunday night (June 8) at Studio Acht in Berlin.

Lamb cites the late James Tenney and Michael Pisaro, two of her CalArts faculty members, as integral influences to her work. It was also during her time at CalArts that she first began to incorporate just intonation, which became a “clear way to investigate the interaction of tones and ever-fluctuating shades, where these interactions in and of themselves became structural elements in her work.”

In an interview for CalArts 2007-09 viewbook, Lamb said, “I’ve written music for many years, but I never considered myself a composer until I came to CalArts. I’m beginning to understand that composing music is congruent to composing an experience.”

Later this month, the sacred realism label releases Lamb’s latest recording in/gradient. Listen to an excerpt.  

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