The Vocal Constructivists are extremely sad to learn that the artist Tom Phillips CBE RA, ‘the most literal man’, died on 28 November 2022. Climbing through the window to get acquainted with Irma, Grenville, the Nurse, Toge and all his friends, has been a pivotal experience on the VC journey. We continue to ‘stir the violet notes’, as the words that Phillips revealed and concealed resound and shape our ongoing collages of sounds and syllables. It was ‘an unbelievable dream’ to prepare and perform Irma in his presence, both in person and online.
To celebrate their tenth anniversary, the Vocal Constructivists are hosting a series of events that invite you to listen, learn, share, and perform with us. The festival, through the square window playfully sequences through these activities over two days. With no entrance fees, no mud, and enough space for all who want to pitch their virtual tents (for brief or longer stays), this festival offers opportunities for creativity, participation, reflection, Q&A, and lively engagement with music-making. There are three structured “events” each day: the first involves a choice of seminars, the second features guest speakers, and the third presents Vocal Constructivists in performance. There are additional opportunities for discussion. This festival is offered in memory of Scratch Orchestra pioneer and broadcaster Carole Finer († March 2020).
Further details and schedule here
THE VOCAL CONSTRUCTIVISTS perform text and graphic scores, alongside works that extend ‘traditional’ notation, bringing a sense of play to their interpretations of experimental music. Coming from diverse backgrounds, with ages ranging from 19 to 79, the Vocal Constructivists draw on an eclectic variety of artistic influences—classical, global, avant-garde, and theatrical. In addition to performing original interpretations of experimental classics such as Cornelius Cardew’s Treatise, they have commissioned and premiered 22 works, establishing themselves as an important force in new music-making. Read our full bio here.
“a group of exceptionally gifted singers who are at one with each other” – Choir and Organ