Matt Wright

Peter Maxwell Davies

Arvo Part




Artistic Director 2014 –  Present Matt Wright

Artistic Director 2008 – 2013  Paul Edlin

Artistic Director 1997 – 2007  Nicholas Cleobury


Sounds New was started in 1997 and was the brainchild of Nicholas Cleobury, Conductor, Paul Edlin tutor at CCCU, Rosemary Dunn head of music at Dover Grammar School for Girls and Joanna Ives, head of music at Astor School Dover.

Primarily there were artists-in-residence and the first of these including Birtwistle and Wallen.


2001 – Guests were Richard Rodney Bennett and Paul Ruders.  Artists included David Campbell, Richard Rodney Bennett, The Britten Sinfonia with Poul Ruder and Nicholas Daniel, Illinois State University Brass Quartet, The Maggini Quartet, The BBC Singers, Bergamo Ensemble, Rolf Hind.  Many masterclasses at CCCU.  Venues include St Gregory’s, local schools, Gulbenkian, Brook Theatre, Chatham, Marlowe Theatre, Theatre Royal, Margate, Canterbury Cathedral.


2002 – Guest – Jonathan Harvey.  Involvement with Orpheus Centre and Royal National Institute of the Blind at Redhill with composition by Richard Stilgoe.   New works from Sir Richard Rodney Bennett and Roderick Watkins. Artists include Paul Crossley and Raphael Wallfisch with Ensemble Bash and Britten Sinfonia.   Venues include St Gregory’s Centre, Old Synagogue, Gulbenkian, Kent Music School, Orpheus Centre, Godnestone, Cathederal Quire, Simon Langton School.


2003 – Guest – Magnus Lindberg.  Artists include Sarah Field, Simon Lepper, David Rees-Williams, Onyx Brass (Collaboration with John Armitage Trust), Bergamo, David Campbell with Tippett Quartet.  Venues as above plus Astor College Dover.


2004 – Guest – James MacMillan.  Artists include Tim Pigott-Smith narrating Edwin Roxburgh’s How Pleasant to know Mr Lear. A day at CCCU with MacMillan – Intro by David Reason, RAM Manson Ensemble conducted by James McMillan, Southbank Sinfonia, MacMillan Cathedral Concert with New London Chamber Ensemble with talk including Archbishop Rowan Williams.  Premieres including works by Basil Athanasiadis.  Venues as above.


2005 – Guest – Mark Anthony Turnage.  First collaboration with Sidney Cooper Gallery – Sea Change Exhibition by Susan Haire.  Artists include RAM, Manson Ensemble , Sans Souci and Sarah Field, Southbank Sinfonia, Dance Warehouse with music by Paul Paterson, Kesh Piano Quartet (collaboration with Deal Festival, CCCU) Dover Town Hall, Evelyn Glennie.  Venues at above but including The Marlowe.


2006 – Guest – Peter Maxwell Davies. Artists include Richard Rodney Bennett, Southbank Sonfonia, Maggini Quartet, Orchestra of the Swan.  Education work A Selkie Tale at Petham Village Hall with cast of over 100. Guildhall School of Music and Drama concert at St Gregory’s with pieces by Paul Paterson and Peter Maxwell Davies.


2007 – Guest – Paul Patterson.  Artists include The Manson Ensemble RCM, Kings School Crypt Choir and CC Cantata Choir with Trillium Brass, RAM Soloists, Southbank Sinfonia, education event at Gulbenkian.  Venues as above.


2008 – Featured Composer, Messiaen.  Event at Sidney Cooper featuring Matt Wright’s Transference.  BBC Singers with Onyx Brass, Kent County Youth Orchestra, London Sinfonietta,, Alasdair Beatson, Peter Hill and Benjamin Frith, Cello Day with Andrzej Bauer, Patrick Nunn, Peter Gregson, Gabriella Swallow and at the Gulbenkian Rohan de Saram and Endymion with Roderick Watkins commission – Lament.  Ensemble Intercontemporain with Quartet for the end of Time in Cathedral Crypt.  Collaboration with Illinois State University and CCCU. Arditti Quartet, Thallein Emsemble from Birmingham Conservatoire – introduction of late night events at Orange Street Music Club.


2009 – Guest – Krzysztof Penderecki (featured events as part of Polska! Year – funded by Polish Cultural Institute) performance of St Luke’s Passion in Canterbury Cathedral included Polish Radio Choir,Warsaw Boys Choir, Katowice City Singers, National Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra.  Residency with CoMA, Polish Film week at CCCU, exhibitions at Sidney Cooper and Turner Contemporary, Philharmonia Orchestra Brass and Royal Scottish Academy Brass with Paul Hubner directed by John Wallace, London Sinfonietta, Ronald Hind, Evan Parker, Warsaw Boys Choir with Canterbury Choral Society Youth Choir, Aurora Orchestra.  Conference on Polish Music at CCCU.


2010Symbolism and Numerology in Music – The Number Seven.  SN awarded grant from EU Interreg to work with Coup de Vents on the International Composer Pyramid for three years – first year winning composers included Hugo Ribeiro from CCCU.  Artists included Aurora Orchestra,  Cityside Sinfonia with Stelios Chatzilosifidis, Julian Warburton with Xenakis Pleiades at Augustine House. Cantus Ansambl, Ensemble Intercontemporain with new piece by Roderick Watkins recorded by BBC Radio 3, Ensemble Modern also recorded by BBC Radio 3, The Ossian Ensemble, CoMA.  Conference at CCCU organised by Dr Eva Mantzourani.


2011Baltic Year (Guest Artist Arvo Part) – collaboration with Embassy of Denmark, Estonian Embassy, Embassy of Lithuania, Embassy of Finland, Embassy of Latvia (who hosted our London launch), Danish Cultural Institute, Polish Cultural Institute, Kingdom of Netherlands.  CCCU Showcase as opening event, Owen Murray and Waves.  First collaboration with University of Kent Poets. Kaunas String Quartet, Robert Stillman and Matt Wright, The Danish Horn Trio,  Arnhus Sinfonietta (piece by CCCU student Hugo Ribeiro), Jack Hues Quartet, Olga Jegunhova, Altera Veritas, Cello Octet Amsterdam in Cathedral Crypt featuring Roderick Watkins Lament, Choir of Kings College Cambridge and the Philharmonia Orchestra with Arvo Part premiere of Adam’s Lament


2012Theme GB – Guest John Tavener - Artists included London Sinfonietta, BBC Big Band, Joby Burgess, Arditt String Quartet, a collaboration with Turner Contemporary and premier of A Fury’s Curses with Lorte Lixemberg, Grimethorpe Colliery Band, Julius Joseph and The Kings Singers.  English Orchestra Ensemble with The Veil of the Temple.


2013 – Education work linked to Universe of Sound with The Philharmonia

In 2012 Sounds New won the European Union’s Cultural Festivals - Education, Audiovisual & Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) – Festival Strand 1.3.6. Some of their comments are cited :


Ambitious programmes are devised by a team of experts in their fields, all of whom have detailed knowledge of the locality yet are aware of national and international trends.


The overall programming of the festival encompasses a significant cultural and geographical variety, exemplifying a diversity in terms of geographical origin and instrumentation.


2014 – Guests included The Brodsky Quartet with a new arrangement by Tony Hymas of Robert Wyatt Cuckooland Album with Elaine Mitchener.  Icebreker with Brian Eno’s ‘Apollo’andLondon Sinfonietta with their Protect Songs.  Exaudi, Wajaham Kahn and a celebration of Evan Parker’s 70th birthday.



Willie Cooper



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