Zubin Kanga: Piano Ex Machina

New Works for Piano and Multimedia

Thursday, 25 June 2020 | 6.00pm – 7.00pm

These four works all explore groundbreaking approaches to combining the piano with new technologies. They were all commissioned and premiered by Zubin Kanga.

Heart of Glass by Alwynne Pritchard
Heart of Glass is inspired by the films of Werner Herzog, hypnotic trances, drag and butoh dance.  This video combines the live performance with simultaneous performances that were played across four televisions in the space (at London Contemporary Music Festival).

Ballast by Jon Rose
Jon Rose draws on his decades of experience as an improviser with violin and motion sensors in this wild exploration of pianistic hyper-virtuosity, expanded using progressively multiplying virtual pianos controlled by a 3D hand sensor.

Transformations by Zubin Kanga
A new work I wrote in which music materials are transferred and transformed as they move between piano and analogue synthesizer, a dialogue that steadily increases in complexity and density until it becomes a morphing wall of sound.

Taking the Auspices by Ben Carey 
This work features subtle and sophisticated interactions between the piano, live computer-generated visuals, and live electronics. It is inspired by the ancient Roman practice of augury, where the flight and flocking patterns of birds were interpreted as omens.

About the creator

Zubin Kanga has collaborated with many of the world’s leading composers including George Benjamin, Thomas Adés, Liza Lim, Nicole Lizée, Alexander Schubert and Michael Finnissy, and premiered more than 120 works.

He has performed at international festivals including the BBC Proms, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival (UK), Melbourne Festival (Australia), Festival Presénces (France), Klang Festival (Denmark), and November Music (Netherlands).

A graduate of the University of Sydney and the Royal Academy of Music, Zubin was previously a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Nice and IRCAM (Paris) and is now a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at Royal Holloway, University of London. www.zubinkanga.com

Music at Royal Holloway MixTape

This work can also be listened to via the Department of Music’s new MixTape on SoundCloud. Please feel free to join us and subscribe to hear the very best of our students and staff.