Hawaii Hawaii Hawaii album release

Joe Cutler’s new album is out on Birmingham Record Company/NMC Recordings and it features the saxophone concerto he wrote for me to play with the BBC Concert Orchestra (conducted by Ben Palmer, and also featuring Ross Stanley on Hammond… and ukulele). The recording is live, taken from the premiere performance last year at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. It’s been receiving some great coverage… The Times gave it 4 stars, and this how the Guardian described it: ‘Part one is a piece of quizzical, fin-de-siècle romanticism; part two a cartoonish riot; part three a nightmarish slab of dystopian science-fiction, where Clowes’s tenor sax seems to serve as the sole representative of humanity.’ I also take this opportunity to congratulate Joe on being shortlisted for an Ivors Composer Award for this fabulous piece of writing.

You can read more about the album, and purchase it, here.

I might also add, it’s so great to have things like this going on whilst live performances are so rare at the moment… here’s to better times ahead in 2021! 🙂

Premiering Joe Cutler’s new saxophone concerto with BBC Concert Orchestra & Ross Stanley

Out now – ‘Sleep 1’ with Orchestra of the Swan

Orchestra of the Swan have just released a single from their forthcoming album ‘Timelapse’ on Signum Classics … it features me improvising over the top of a slow movement from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and it is available here: http://smarturl.it/OotSTimelapse

I had a great time recording my part at home, earlier this year during the first lockdown.

I hope you enjoy the results!

You can hear/see more about the process here:

World Premiere of Round By the Ness

Tonight at 6pm BST Louise McMonagle will be premiering Round By the Ness, my new piece for solo cello, as part of a concert for Living Room Live. All the info on how to watch the concert is here. The full programme is as follows:
Lutoslawski – Sacher Variation
Ailie Robertson – Skydance
Samantha Fernando – Fault LInie
Trish Clowes – Round by The Ness (world premiere)
Zoe Martlew – Salat Babilya

Louise McMonagle

Programme note for Round By the Ness

Written for Louise McMonagle, in response to images and sounds captured by film-maker Rose Hendry along the East Neuk of Fife coastline, and dedicated to the memory of Alan Ford (lover of all things musical and geological).

As I sat down to write this piece, Rose was sending me images and videos of the coastline, on different days, near where she was staying in Scotland in Spring 2020. I began sketching ideas in response to the way the seaweed moved with the waves, the dancing sunlight or the moody clouds on the horizon, the patterns in the sand, bright orange flowers and darkened rocks. One of the recurring motifs in the piece is a series of microtones, which mimics the birdsong I could hear accompanying the sounds of the sea.

I have worked with Louise for many years, and she is a dear friend. Over time, I have developed a collection of favourite cello techniques that I have thoroughly enjoyed putting into action in this solo cello piece. In particular, I have been inspired by Louise’s performances of Heinz Holliger’s Chaconne, which showcases exceptional cello writing – I have learnt so much from exploring this work.

Some of the images Rose took along the East Neuk of Fife coastline…

I hope you enjoy the concert!! I can’t wait…


I just thought I’d share some things that my ears have been loving recently…

First up is a new album from bassist-composer-producer Michael Olatuja called ‘Lagos Pepper Soup’, available here: https://michaelolatuja.bandcamp.com/

An incredible vision for an album, and soooo much joy. Here’s a video of one of the tracks called ‘Soki’ which features legends Dianne Reeves and Lionel Loueke

Next up is a piece called “i only bite because you make me” by Yshani Perinpanayagam, for piano synchronised to a perfect game of snake. It was written for “The Pixel Players” hosted by Royal Concert Hall Nottingham and the National Videogames Arcade, March 2019. I think this is just a brilliant, inventive piece of writing.

Next one… admittedly I’m a bit biased, this is a video of my good friend Louise McMonagle performing Heinz Holliger’s ‘Chaconne’ for solo cello. I’m writing Louise my own solo piece at the moment, so I’ve been checking out the details of this incredible composition, and Louise’s brilliant performance of it!

Finally, I’ve discovered these amazing string quartets by Eleanor Alberga… These are just EVERYTHING I want to hear in string quartet writing… Happy listening everyone!

Architecture of Autonomy

Yesterday, a wonderful film I wrote music for went live…!

Architecture of Autonomy was designed and produced by Kristina Walsh, and it includes many, many wonderful artists, practitioners and craftspeople… (full credits below)

The music is called ‘Alison’, for my mum, and it’s performed by yours truly and Ross Stanley (piano and organ).

Film credits:

Creative Director, Designer, Producer – Kristina Walsh
Film Director, D.O.P, Editor – Mae Sass
Choreographer, Movement Director – Cathy Waller
Rehearsal Director – Julie Ann Minaai
Music ‘Alison’ by Saxophonist + Composer – Trish Clowes
with Pianist + Organist – Ross Stanley
Hair + Make Up – Ellie Morris
Film Assistant – Cengi Sen
Production Assistant – Baani Singh

Performers (in order of appearance):
Yukiko Masui, Erin Ball, Sade Alleyne, Vanessa Guevara, Leanne Thompson

Supported by Arts Council England and Sarabande Foundation

Kristina – Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/krisewalsh/ Website: https://kris-walsh.com/

BBC Postcard ‘Earworm’ for solo violin

Recently I was commissioned by BBC Radio 3 to write a ‘postcard’, a miniature piece for a solo instrument. I chose violin, and yesterday ‘Earworm’ was premiered on BBC Radio 3’s Breakfast programme by the brilliant Nathaniel Anderson-Frank, leader of the BBC Concert Orchestra. The piece was then broadcast again during R3’s afternoon and evening concerts. Here is a link to the afternoon concert, which includes a short intro from me (it’s from about 1hr10mins in): https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000jhjd

Nathaniel and I also put together a video as we live pretty close (a field recording I suppose… socially distanced!), which has been shared on Twitter and Facebook. Here’s the facebook link: https://www.facebook.com/bbcconcertorchestra/videos/3458752397486439

I hope you enjoy! Although completely forced on me by the pandemic, I’ve been loving exploring the solo concept, both in my writing and my playing. I’m currently working on a solo piece for cellist Louise McMonagle… so watch this space! And I have a solo saxophone track up on bandcamp now too: https://trishclowes.bandcamp.com/track/i-cant-find-my-other-brush-the-month-of-january