Quick Buy
HCMF01 Ensemble Musikfabrik: Saunders 1
The pioneering Ensemble Musikfabrik are a Cologne-based music group dedicated to discovering new and extraordinary methods of communication. Joined by renowned soprano Juliet Fraser and conductor Enno Poppe, they perform Rebecca Saunders’ new work Yes, a meditation on the ambiguities of language and expression. Inspired by the time-warping monologue that concludes James Joyce’s masterpiece Ulysses, it is a literally breathtaking piece of music, the ensemble responding to the inhales and exhales in Fraser’s vocal performance with fluid arrangements. The result is an ever-changing collage of music and theatre in which our preconceived notions of language are lost to time.
16/11/2018 19:00
HCMF02 Christian Marclay: To be continued

Lausanne’s EnsemBle baBel have alongstanding relationship with the work of Christian Marclay, having played hispieces on an international stage since 2012. As part of his residency at hcmf//2018 they perform the UK premiere of To Be Continued, a graphic score conceived by Marclay specificallyfor the ensemble in the form of a 48-page comic-book, alongside two ofMarclay’s ‘video scores’: Fade to Slide and The Belland the Glass, Marclay’s firstendeavor to guide musicians through the use of video, inspired by two ofPhiladelphia’s most famous icons – the Liberty Bell and Marcel Duchamp’s TheBride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors.

16/11/2018 22:00
HCMF03 Duo Gelland
Violinists Cecilia and Martin Gelland have an encyclopedic relationship with contemporary music. Considered one of the most engaging and energetic music groups in Europe, they are known for their endurance run performances, invigorating pieces with an intense, emotional style of interpretation. Their reputation serves them well in this concert of radical and maze-like music, which includes the thunderous violin impulses of Hans-Joachim Hespos’ a e r i, and James Dillon’s Traumwerk, a mischievously tangled piece which serves as an interpretation of the confounding art of renaissance painter Albrecht Dürer.
17/11/2018 13:00
HCMF04 Wikipiano
Australian-born pianist Zubin Kanga is a seasoned interpreter of iconic works by contemporary music’s leading composers. In this fascinating concert, he will perform premieres by established and emerging artists alike, supplementing his piano with a series of disruptive makeshift instruments. Scored for magnetic resonators, cameras, body microphones and live editing from the public, these pieces hinge on discrepancy and contingency, offering a probing and political concert exploring composing as a radical action of confrontation.
17/11/2018 16:00
HCMF05 The Monochrome Project: Braxton
In 50 years of composing and performing, Anthony Braxton’s music has remained ineffable and incomparable. A multi-instrumentalist and improviser whose early records featured on the iconic leftfield jazz label BYG Actuel, he has gained renown as one of experimental music’s most adventurous voices, marrying theory to free play. In this unique showcase, led by Marco Blaauw, the Monochrome Project bring two pieces from his longstanding Composition series to life: 103, for seven trumpets, is performed hand-in-hand with 173, a pantomimic work combining complex instrumentation and experimental character acting.
17/11/2018 19:00
HCMF06 Ensemble Mosaik: Poppe
Ensemble Mosaik ring in 20 years of future-bound musical exploration with an archaeological dig. With a penchant for making real-time experiments of their concerts, they interpret Enno Poppe’s Rundfunk by shapeshifting into an orchestra of synthesisers. A piece that pays homage to the history of electronic music by reconstructing it on modern digital instruments, Rundfunk becomes a facsimile of the 60s and 70s synthesiser sound, a computer-made replica that considers technology’s march of progress. In reconstructing the past this way, Poppe speaks to our present day art practices, echoing the hologram pop stars rocking the festival circuit.
17/11/2018 21:30
HCMF07 Ensemble Musikfabrik: Saunders 2
Ensemble Musikfabrik are next-of-kin for Rebecca Saunders’s music, having played it all over the world in a variety of shapeshifting set-ups. In a second concert showcasing her recent works, Ensemble Musikfabrik divide themselves. Having tackled Yes as a group, the ensemble now deliver microcosmic performances of Aether, confined to a bass clarinet duo for Carl Rosman and Richard Haynes, and a new work for percussion. The expansive vision of Saunders’ music is here rendered sparse.
18/11/2018 13:00
HCMF08 Christian Marclay: Investigations
The world premiere of Christian Marclay’s Investigations, a new score made of 100 photographs, and featuring 20 pianists who transcribe and interpret the image, using speculation to create a sequence of chance musical responses.
18/11/2018 16:00
HCMF09 Nice Guys Win Twice
https://hcmf.co.uk/eDanish ensemble SCENATET take on the role of performers in Nice Guys Win Twice, a political commentary on the absurdity of modern information. Jesse Marino’s theatre piece takes the well-known phenomenon of fake news as its starting point, meditating on the daily subterfuge delivered by media platforms and presidents. Supplemented by live electronics and prepared visuals, SCENATET’s movements reflect the mundanity and melodrama found in living alongside our mess of a political climate. Through surreal choreography and glitching media, Nice Guys Win Twice becomes another reality to second guess.ent/nice-guys-win-twice/
18/11/2018 19:30
HCMF10 Temko: Riley
Shri Camel has become a rare artefact of Terry Riley’s work. Composed after the landmarks In C and A Rainbow in Curved Air, the piece continued his pursuit of classical minimalism while honouring a growing influence from Indian music. It is notoriously hard to perform: replicating Riley’s score, written for a specifically modified keyboard used to achieve ‘just intonation’ tuning, is no easy feat. In this unique concert, musical polymaths Temko break Shri Camel’s golden rule, ditching the synthesiser. Instead, they play new instruments built for the occasion to achieve the precise tunings and uncanny beauty of Riley’s original.
18/11/2018 22:00
HCMF11 Sarah Cahill
Pianist Sarah Cahill has developed a reputation as one of piano music’s most compelling voices, an artist who has introduced complex and uncompromising work to wide audiences. Her close relationship with the minimalist music of Terry Riley is on display in this performance of Keyboard Studies, an exercise piece of phenomenal speed whose constituent parts can be substituted and combined. It’s complemented by the fittingly titled Be Kind to One Another, a musical gesture of empathy known for its gentle, balmy atmosphere. Works from Lou Harrison and Harold Budd complete a programme of piano music that is both intriguing and comforting
20/11/2018 12:00
HCMF12 United Instruments of Lucillin
The United Instruments of Lucilin are Luxembourg’s premier music group and its first ever chamber ensemble. Named in reference to the country’s historical name, they represent a growing population of players and composers interested in contemporary music as a broad church, valuing soundscapes, music-theatre and dramatic composition in equal measure. In this game-changing performance, the ordinarily acoustic group metamorphose, taking on Pierre Alexandre Tremblay’s electro-acoustic composition un fil rouge alongside the empty spaces and spectral resonances of Nick Morrish Rarity’s life of lines II.
20/11/2018 15:30
HCMF13 Harriet
Flemish theatre group Muziektheater Transparant present Harriet, a monodrama depicting the life and impact of 18th century abolitionist Harriet Tubman. Having escaped her life as a slave, Tubman devoted herself to saving others through the Underground Railroad – a system of safe routes used to break out slaves and help them reach the free states. Composed and conceived by internationally celebrated composer Hilda Paredes, this ambitious and powerful narrative details Tubman’s journey from captivity into activism, depicting both the suffering she endured and the spiritual experiences that spurred her onward.
20/11/2018 19:00
HCMF14 Thurston Moore
A founding member of noise rock legends Sonic Youth and a free improviser in his own right, Thurston Moore has spent the last 30 years threading together a disparate network of guitar music. His tenure on the instrument is evident in this concert, which includes a solo performance of Composer in Residence Christian Marclay’s Wind-up Guitar, a customised acoustic instrument which Marclay has fitted with 12 music box mechanisms, along with a tribute to late avant-garde guitarist Glenn Branca. A pivotal figure in the New York no wave scene of the 70s and 80s, Branca is famous for providing guitar music with a template for modern classical composition in The Ascension. In this fitting homage, Moore brings his influence full circle.
20/11/2018 21:30
HCMF15 Kudzu
An ensemble of extremes, the Curious Chamber Players continue to knock on every possible door still to be opened, playing anything from chance music and modernism to works by the young composers of our time. At hcmf// 2018, they present Kudzu, a scathing new work by composer Malin Bång. A conceptual sequel to Siku, performed at hcmf// 2017, Kudzu critiques the political and economic causes of our planet’s ecological collapse, delivering the apocalypse genre the protest song it deserves. Prepared for an ensemble with a trail of found-object instruments, the piece is typical of Bång, whose themes of time and environment gain physical representation. Not just conscious of the environment, Bång’s music is a part of it.
21/11/2018 19:00
HCMF16 Fast Gold Butterflies
Netherlands-based Ensemble Klang strive to keep sound from finding a shape, making sure it never stagnates into one single style. A virtuosic group with curatorial interests – they work closely with composers, and also run their own label – they here join forces with composer and sound artist Matt Wright. With compositions for acoustic and electronic instrumentation, Wright threads together his work as a composer with hours spent moonlighting at clubs. Alongside his pieces, the ensemble deliver likeminded music from member Pete Harden. An artist whose music links together natural and mechanical ecosystems, Harden’s piece Guiyu Guitars becomes its own setting, his instruments hanging on venue walls in a performed sound installation.
21/11/2018 21:30
HCMF17 Lori Freedman: Beyond Excess
Master of the low end clarinets, Canadian performer/composer Lori Freedman will present new works written for her by Martin Arnold, Paul Steenhuisen and Paolo Perezzani as well as a selection of her own most recent creations. Traveling the thresholds of the instruments’ capacities and obscuring the divides between written and improvised music, this 50-minute solo spectacle will also be the UK CD launch of two recordings featuring her most recent solo work: Solor (Ambiances Magnétiques) and Excess (Collection QB).
22/11/2018 12:00
HCMF18 Kluster5
With an unorthodox assembly of instruments and wayward influences from jazz and pop, Kluster5 eschew the typical expectations placed upon contemporary ensembles. In this programme, they more than prove their versatility, performing five contrasting pieces written for them by emerging composers. These works range from ethereal tone poems to geographical surveys of the Hague, the ensemble’s hometown, alongside a startling ode to the Dutch jazz pianist Misha Mengelberg, focusing on a duet the Alzheimer’s-suffering composer played with a young performer in the final days of his life.
22/11/2018 16:00
HCMF19 A History of the Voice
Brussels vocal collective HYOID Ensemble mark their hcmf// debut with a test of endurance and will from the ever uncompromising Jennifer Walshe. A composer known for her immensely visceral work, Walshe’s new piece interrogates the voice, considering the limitations and expectations that come with opening our mouths. A piece of musical anthropology, A History of the Voice gets close up with the norms of pop music, the politics of broadcasting, the appropriation of accents and the people inside our phones – all the while using HYOID as an experiment in the potential reaches of the human instrument.
22/11/2018 19:00
HCMF20 Christian Marclay: Screenplay + Okkyung Lee

Three siblings of the British avant-garde family come together in a resounding collaboration that tests their talents of interpretation and improvisation. Saxophonist John Butcher is joined by drummer Mark Sanders and multi-instrumentalist Steve Beresford, responding to the visual cues of Christian Marclay’s projected musical score Screen Play. Their attempts are complemented by an improvised performance from celebrated experimental cellist Okkyung Lee.

22/11/2018 21:00
HCMF21 Quatuor Bozzini
In keeping with their commitment to the radical fringes of sound, Quatuor Bozzini perform works by two pioneering forces of electronic music. Eliane Radigue and Phil Niblock have permanently revolutionised long-form composition, their interest in the hidden ripples, tones and harmonics of sustained music eschewing common understandings of ‘ambient’ sound. Their approach to creating busy, active music within a droning, durational framework makes them two of modern music’s most distinct artists.
22/11/2018 23:00
HCMF22 Mimitabu
Exploring the work of visionary composers emerging from Sweden and Croatia, Mimitabu combine acoustic instruments with electronic devices, considering the compositional grey areas found at our modern intersection of serve and self-serve. While artistic director Johan Svensson’s new work uses both traditional instruments and stand-in mechanical forms, Sarah Glojnarić’s sugarcoating #2 uses digital information to break down the supposed simplicities of pop music to a molecular level more in tune with our overloaded lives. Joakin Sandgren’s corps étrangers and Hanna Hartman’s THE BOILER ROOM complete the programme.
23/11/2018 12:00
MUTED is a musical prescription. It is written in sympathy for performer Monica Germino: suffering from hearing problems, the violinist has been incapable of playing her usual repertoire due to its loud volume. Composer collective David Lang, Michael Gordon, Louis Andriessen and Julia Wolfe responded by crafting this unconventionally quiet solo piece, one that deconstructs solo concert conventions and considers our vulnerable relationship with sound. MUTED is a work that reveres sound, considering not just its use as art form, but also its force as nature. The concert will take place at St Thomas’ Church, an intimate setting that epitomises the piece’s concepts of protection and insulation.
HCMF24 Divertimento Ensemble: Sciarrino
Divertimento Ensemble unravel the disquieting world of Italian composer Salvatore Sciarrino. A master of inhabiting space and pronouncing silence, Sciarrino’s music is marked by its sparsity, becoming louder and more intense for its restraint. Past works have included chamber music, opera and theatre – unsettling works that focus on the shadows reflected from our realities. His use of dissonance in romantic frameworks makes him one of contemporary music’s most fascinating composers, an artist whose work can be as beautiful as it is harrowing. Works by Italian composers Francesco Filidei and Francesca Verunelli open proceedings.
23/11/2018 19:00
HCMF25 Stockhausen: Oktophonie
In this expansive audio-visual collaboration, Thomas Moore and Klaas Verpoest create a maximalist tribute to the work of Karlheinz Stockhausen. It is a chance to hear two of the German composer’s pieces, albeit simultaneously: Signale zur Invasion and Oktophonie come from Stockhausen’s Deinstag aus Licht, a ‘modular opera’ from the larger song cycle Licht, in which separate pieces can interact with one another as segments or layers. In this concert, filmmaker Klaas Verpoest provides grand, moving shapes that consume the figure of trombonist Thomas Moore, who walks into the audience while playing, emphasising the nonlinear space sound occupies.
23/11/2018 21:30
HCMF26 Christian Marclay + Okkyung Lee + Mats Gustafsson
Christian Marclay rounds off his hcmf// residency with a collaboration with Mats Gustafsson, a saxophonist / reed player known for a seismic style of playing that draws on overblowing, microtonal music and noise, and Okkyung Lee, a cellist renowned for her vigorous avant-garde excursions. Lee and Gustafsson have both collaborated with Christian Marclay before, as instrumental counterparts to his turntable improvisations, but this concert sees them set up as a trio in an all-acoustic performance.
23/11/2018 23:00
HCMF27 Ligeti Quartet
The Ligeti Quartet deliver a concert that poses existential questions of contemporary music: who is it by, and who is it for? Stef Conner’s Singing Strings is a stand-up comedy skit on string quartets, a piece that bites back at appropriate compositional norms in a musical shouting match. The piece is complemented by works by Christian Mason, focusing on Tuvan and Sardinian vocal traditions, and a performance of throat singer Tanya Tagaq’s Sivunittinni. A Canadian Inuk, Tagaq released the record Retribution in 2016, a galvanising year in the justice movement for the country’s indigenous people. The piece is stark and potent, and its place on festival programmes challenges the filters and purposes of contemporary art.
24/11/2018 12:00
HCMF28 Sciarrino: Carnaval
Vocal ensemble EXAUDI specialise in radical and transgressive iterations of contemporary music. Complemented by the vision and energy of the young Explore Ensemble – returning to hcmf// for their third consecutive year – they deliver the UK premiere of Salvatore Sciarrino’s Carnaval, a composition in 12 movements written for five voices, piano and ensemble. It is a work that contains Sciarrino’s delicate, stark and yet often explosive compositional style, holding catharsis hostage to tension. Requiring meticulous and attentive players, the ensembles recreate the piece’s disquieting sparsity, performing declarative a cappella, instrumental vignettes and dramatic silences.
24/11/2018 19:30
HCMF29 hcmf// mixtape
A staple of the hcmf// programme, our annual mixtape reimagines performance as playlist. This year, the programme features a startling rendition of Julius Eastman’s ferocious opus, Evil Nigger. Having taken on a much-deserved legacy in recent years, this work represents a turning point in Eastman’s career towards unflinching and confrontational expressions. A deeply political act considering the way work was billed and presented in the predominantly white music institution he occupied, the piece presents the essential voice Eastman provided and was often maligned for. Originally written for four pianos, Eastman noted it could be played on any set of instruments; here, it is reworked as a string piece, performed by the Arditti, Bozzini and Ligeti quartets.
24/11/2018 22:00
HCMF30 Arditti Quartet + Jake Arditti
The venerable Arditti Quartet graced last year’s festival with a series of UK premieres; this year, they debut works from established hcmf// collaborator and 2014 Composer in Residence James Dillon, performing two new compositions for string quartet. Accompanying these pieces are a UK premiere of Clara Ianotta’s Dead Wasps In a Jam-Jar III – a composition concerned with movement, pressure and perpetual states – and Salvatore Sciarrino’s Cosa Resta, with countertenor written for and performed by Jake Arditti.
25/11/2018 13:00
With POLES, Karlheinz Stockhausen created an ‘open score’ in which music was reduced to polar positions, with all notes transcribed as either pluses or minuses. This reduction of process opened performances up to simple but effective variations, the score ultimately becoming a long series of interactive inputs. The work was crafted for two players and sound diffusion, offering a flexible instrumental set-up; in this concert, flutist Camilla Hoitenga and synth player Taavi Kerikmäe deliver a historically faithful performance, suggesting both the potential deviations and inevitable constraints that exist in Stockhausen’s composition.
25/11/2018 16:00