Saxophonist and composer Trish Clowes has been described as “an improviser to be reckoned with” (Downbeat Magazine) and “one of the most agile and original jugglers of improv and adventurous composition to have appeared in the UK in recent times” (The Guardian). Clowes is currently an Associate Artist at Wigmore Hall and she is devoted to reimagining the musical landscape for the saxophone. Her latest album ‘A View with a Room’ is out on US trumpeter Dave Douglas’s Greenleaf Music, the seventh of her critically acclaimed album releases as leader. Clowes enjoys playing and writing for a wide variety of settings, and her band MY IRIS has been hailed as “the jazz of the future” (Augsburger Allgemeine).
Notable career performances include the Barbican, Toronto Jazz Festival, Rochester International Jazz Festival, Royal Festival Hall, Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club, Wigmore Hall, Celtic Connections (with BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra), Women in (e)motion Festival (Germany), National Opera House (Ireland), Galway Jazz Festival, and broadcasts for BBC 2 Proms Extra, BBC Radio 3 and Radio Bremen. In May 2023, MY IRIS were joined by Dave Douglas for a special gig at the 606 Club in London, playing a mixture of Douglas and Clowes’s compositions.
Clowes premiered Joe Cutler’s saxophone concerto ‘Hawaii Hawaii Hawaii’ in 2019 with the BBC Concert Orchestra, the recording of which is released on Cutler’s album of the same name on NMC Recordings. Clowes is also a featured soloist with the London Symphony Orchestra on Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian’s debut album for NMC Recordings, and two albums with Orchestra of the Swan on Signum Classics.
Recent commissions include writing for the London Sinfonietta, National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain (for the BBC Proms 2022), Orchestra of the Swan, BBC Radio 3, and Architecture of Autonomy (producing music for a dance-film). Clowes’s music video ‘Abbott & Costello’, directed by Rose Hendry, was shortlisted for Voice of a Woman Awards 2019, and screened at Cannes Lions Festival and Aesthetica Short Film Festival.
Clowes released a series of albums on Basho Records from 2010-2019, working with artists such as Gwilym Simcock, Jules Buckley (conducting two orchestral tracks on her debut album ‘Tangent’), and the BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by André de Ridder (three tracks on her third album ‘Pocket Compass’). From 2012-14 Clowes was a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist, and during that time she was commissioned by BBC Radio 3 to write for the BBC Concert Orchestra, a piece that won her a British Composer Award in 2015. Clowes has also collaborated with Norma Winstone, Heath Quartet, Donald Grant (Elias Quartet), Mike Walker, Food (Iain Ballamy & Thomas Strønen), Louise McMonagle (Riot Ensemble), vocal ensemble Juice, and appeared on the soundtrack for the feature documentary ‘Ronnie’s’ by Oliver Murray, with music composed by Alex Heffes.
Born on May 11th 1984, Clowes was raised in Shrewsbury, Shropshire and moved to London in 2003 to study at the Royal Academy of Music – she was later honoured as an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music (2013). Clowes holds a PhD in Musical Composition, awarded by Birmingham City University (Royal Birmingham Conservatoire) in 2020. Her research project was centred around the activities of her new music festival Emulsion, exploring collective practice and audience interaction through her compositions, and was funded by a STEAM Scholarship (2016). Clowes is an ambassador for the charity forRefugees (formerly Donate4Refugees), and teaches for Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Royal Academy of Music, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, and has guest tutored at the Royal College of Music.