The Gildas Quartet, praised for their ‘energy, verve and refreshing approach’ have been performing together since 2011 when they formed at the Royal Northern College of Music. Since then they have won numerous awards, including first prize in the Audience Engagement category at the 2018 Franz Schubert and Modern Music Competition, and toured in China, Europe, South Africa and Australia. Highlights of the past year include a concert of quintets with Joanna MacGregor and Adrian Brendel at the Wigmore Hall, an intensive week working with Harrison Birtwistle as the quartet in residence for his advanced composition class at Dartington International Summer School and launching their award-winning ‘Surround Sound Sessions’ project in London and Graz.
The quartet is passionate about new music and in addition to their collaboration with Birtwistle have recently premiered works by Freya Waley-Cohen, Philip Cashian and Cheryl Frances-Hoad among others. The quartet’s recording of two works by Cheryl Frances-Hoad is due to be released on the Champs Hill label in 2020 and their premiere of her song cycle for soprano and quartet, ‘Endless Forms Most Beautiful’, received a four star review in the Times in 2019.
The grant from Help Musicians will help us develop our project Surround Sound Sessions during the Covid19 lockdown. We will be working with composer Harry Whalley to create a new piece which will be recorded remotely and use binaural panning technology in the mixing process to create a 3D listening experience.