“IRIDESCENT AND COMPELLING”
- The Guardian
His music is a breath on the wind.
His music is light dancing on water.
His music is a lover’s whisper in the dead of night.
It is both beautiful and strange.
This season, we’re very proud to be touring a new work by Edmund Finnis. It’s called The Centre is Everywhere, and we gave the first ever performance of it this summer, at the Southbank Centre in London. Now, we’re bringing this mysterious and beautiful object on tour, to be performed in seven cities by the full Manchester Collective lineup - twelve solo string players.
Alongside Edmund’s “ethereally beautiful” music (The Herald Scotland), the show also features an unholy mashup of Ligeti’s Métamorphosen Nocturnes and Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, performed by our very own Rakhi Singh. We close the show with Richard Strauss’ devastating Metamorphosen - a piece of music written by an old, dying man during the last months of the Second World War. The piece is an elegy for Europe.
Metamorphosen is a piece we’ve wanted to play for a long time - it’s a real “Mount Everest” for string players - and we can’t wait to share it with you in this, our largest and most ambitious programme to date.
Our commission of The Centre is Everywhere by Edmund Finnis is kindly supported by Arts Council England, the PRSF Foundation’s New Music Biennial, the RVW Charitable Trust, and The Leche Trust.
Invisible Wind Factory
The Stoller Hall
CLF Art Cafe
Leeds Town Hall
The White Hotel
Ligeti Métamorphosen nocturnes
Vivaldi Four Seasons
Finnis The Centre is Everywhere
Rakhi Singh Solo Violin
Edmund Finnis Composer
Violin: Caroline Pether, Helena Buckie, Cerys Jones, Will Newell
Viola: Ruth Gibson, Kimi Makino
Cello: Will Hewer, Peggy Nolan
Rakhi Singh is a violinist, curator, producer, and composer. She is Music Director and co-founder of Manchester Collective, with which she curates and directs over 50 concerts a year, nationally and internationally.
Described in the Guardian’s Classical picks as ‘the golden tone of violinist Rakhi Singh’ she featured in the ensemble for Philip Glass and Phelim McDermott’s theatre piece Tao of Glass in the Manchester International Festival, 2019.
As a composer, in 2018 she premiered Written in Fire – a piece for string quartet, electronics and live visuals co-created and performed by Rakhi and electronic musician Vessel (Sebastian Gainsborough) This production subsequently toured the UK to great acclaim, and in June 2019, Rakhi and Vessel premiered their second major work. Paradise Lost was scored for 3 singers, violin, viol and electronics.
Rakhi regularly plays live on BBC Radio 3, and has been a guest curator on programmes with Elizabeth Alker, and for NTS Radio Manchester.
Although classically trained, Rakhi’s music making defies categorisation, and the range of her collaborators reflects her diverse musical taste. Recent musical collaborators include Oliva Chaney, Abel Selaocoe, Oliver Coates, Vessel, Ossia, Benji B, Take That, London Contemporary Orchestra, Mira Calix, Katya Apekishiva, Llyr Williams, Adrian Brendel, Guy Johnston, and composers Paul Clark, Edmund Finnis and Emily Hall.
She plays on a Sebastian Vuilluame violin made in 1860.
“Edmund Finnis creates glistening, dancing music with an air of diffident mystery. It’s mentally tough, often focusing on just a few elements which are carefully weighed and transformed. But the sounds themselves are delicate and glowing, with an intriguing quality of being familiar and strange at once.”
Ivan Hewett, The Telegraph
Edmund Finnis is a “hugely gifted composer” (Sunday Telegraph) whose music has been hailed as “magical” (The Times), “iridescent, compelling” (The Guardian), “exquisite” (Sara Mohr-Pietsch, BBC Radio 3) and “ethereally beautiful” (Herald Scotland). His works are regularly performed and broadcast, both at home in the UK and internationally.
Finnis’ multifaceted output ranges from intimate music for soloists and duets to immersive electronic pieces, music for film, ensemble music, and works for large orchestra.
He has written music for some of the leading performers of his own generation (Benjamin Beilman, Mark Simpson, Víkingur Ólafsson, Clare Hammond, Oliver Coates, Minetti Quartet), and renowned ensembles such as Britten Sinfonia, BCMG and London Sinfonietta. His orchestral works have been performed by orchestras including the LSO, the BBC Scottish Symphony, and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago.