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The BBC Philharmonic has announced that Anna Clyne is its new Composer in Association until 2026. The role begins in October with the UK premiere of Clyne’s recent saxophone concerto for Jess Gillam, Glasslands, the first of three commissioned works for the BBC Philharmonic.

Anna Clyne’s new role with the BBC Philharmonic, as its Composer in Association between 2023 and 2026, features three new scores commissioned by the orchestra from the acclaimed UK-born, US-resident composer. The relationship is launched on 5 October with the UK premiere of Glasslands, which Clyne composed for celebrated saxophonist Jess Gillam. The performance at Nottingham Royal Concert Hall is conducted by Mark Wigglesworth and will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3.

Glasslands conjures an imaginary world of three realms governed by the banshee - a female spirit who, in Irish folklore, heralds the death of a family member, usually by wailing, shrieking, or keening in the silence of the night. The concerto was premiered by Jess Gillam with the Detroit Symphony in February this year and, following the BBC Philharmonic’s performance, it is also scheduled this season by the Orquesta Sinfonica de Castilla y Leon in Vallodolid, the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra in Florida, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, all with Jess Gillam as soloist.

Clyne’s appointment builds on an existing creative relationship with the Manchester-based BBC Philiharmonic, which includes the UK premiere of This Midnight Hour at The Bridgewater Hall in 2020, and Anna Clyne in Focus, which saw students from the Royal Northern College of Music perform side by side with members of the BBC Philharmonic. Three of Clyne’s original soundscapes were performed alongside original student compositions at the concert in the BBC Philharmonic Studios at MediaCityUK earlier this year.
Clyne joins a distinguished line of composers associated with the BBC Philharmonic including Mark Simpson, HK Gruber, Sir James MacMillan, Sir Peter Maxwell Davis and Tom Coult.

Anna Clyne says: "I am very excited to take up my new role with the BBC Philharmonic. They are a unique and very special ensemble, committed to the community they serve in Manchester and inspired in their choice of repertoire. It has already been a fantastic experience collaborating with them and Jess Gillam on Glasslands and I look forward to creating the next piece with them."

Simon Webb, Head of BBC Orchestras & Choirs says: "The BBC Philharmonic first worked with Anna Clyne when Night Ferry was included in the second Ten Pieces film. The appointment of Anna as the Philharmonic’s Composer in Association continues that relationship and makes a clear statement that the BBC Philharmonic proudly champions the best British music on the international stage, connecting to audiences with newly commissioned works in the concert hall, through our education work, on air and online. I’m so excited to hear Glasslands in Nottingham next month."

About Anna Clyne
Anna Clyne is one of the most in-demand composers today, working with orchestras, choreographers, filmmakers, and visual artists around the world. She was named the 8th most performed contemporary composer in the world and the most performed living female British composer in 2022.

Anna Clyne has been commissioned and presented by the world’s most revered arts institutions, including the Barbican, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Los Angeles Philharmonic, MoMA, Philharmonie de Paris, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, San Francisco Ballet, and the Sydney Opera House; and her music has opened such events as the Edinburgh International Festival, The Last Night of the Proms, and the New York Philharmonic’s season.

>  Further information on Work: Glasslands

Photo: Christina Kernohan

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