Sorana Santos

Award: Career Development Bursary

Year: 2017

Genre: Jazz

Instrument/voice type: Voice/ Composer

Location: London


Sorana is a Hispanic multi-instrumentalist, composer and writer based in London. Her music and writing bring together elements of the contemporary music, jazz, and songwriting traditions to produce works that illustrate the inextricable links between music and language.

Her composition portfolio includes commissions from the BBC and The Rose Theatre, Southbank, and a BASCA nomination for a British Composer Award under the Contemporary Jazz category for her 2015 album/book 'Our Lady of Stars', which she toured with Conor Chaplin, James Maddren and Joe Wright with an award from Arts Council England.

As a performer, Sorana replaced Florence Welch in her breakthrough band, Ashok managed by Jack Steven (Jamiroquai/Annie Lennox), featured in sessions for Polydor, Northstar Music, Playstation, collaborated with DJ Buddy Peace, and performed at The Queen Elizabeth Hall, The Royal Albert Hall, The Southbank Centre, Jazzlines, OCM, and The Vortex.

2016 saw Sorana honour the 40th anniversary of Joni Mitchell's Hejira with a recreation of the road trip Mitchell took from Maine to LA (on which most of the album was written), and a re-imagining of Hejira is planned for 2017.

Lazy Gramophone Press published and promoted Sorana's poetry and prose since 2006, and her articles on music and language in society have been featured in The Guardian, The Wire, Music Think Tank, Agenda Poetry Journal and former underground cult magazine, Dogma.

She is a Visiting Lecturer at both Oxford University and at London's Centre for Young Musicians (a division of The Guildhall) - her former pupils being Grammy nominee Jax Jones, MOBO winner Shakka Philip and session pianist Yasmin Baker.