Celebrity Soft Spot Kelly Lovelady

Originally posted at Noted:

Kelly Lovelady is a Perth girl now based in London where she is founder and artistic director of the Australian orchestra Ruthless Jabiru. She drinks tea with Sir Colin Davis, conducts concerts for Greenpeace and lives in a house boat on a canal. This is someone you need to know about!

What music gets your heart racing?
I do a lot of different types of listening these days. Sometimes Im listening to the musicians, sometimes the repertoire, the interpretation, the program, the chemistry, the venue, the sound of a composer, the sound of an instrument, the strength of a piece, the impact of a conductor, the list goes on. My ear responds differently to music I know well compared to something Im hearing for the first time. I do get excited about discovering new composers and their music. At the moment I cant get enough of Counterstream Radio which is the online broadcast of New Music USA. I also love Late Junction (BBC…

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Answers on a postcard

Originally posted at Kelly Lovelady:

Last month the first anniversary of Peter Sculthorpe’s passing quietly slipped by. Some of you may remember back in 2012 when Peter accepted my commission to write a collection of miniatures for my chamber orchestra Ruthless Jabiru. Although Postcards from Jabiru was never completed, Peter’s sketches for the piece still leave us with something rich – his own impression of where we should go from here.

Peter spoke to me years ago of the gentle jabiru and its mesmeric leggy gait but through this project I think he wanted me to see the duality of Jabiru – as equally a pin in the map, a land, a people, a place from which postcards are sent – and a conversation starter about open pit uranium mining within Kakadu…

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Kelly Lovelady on peace, reappropriation and new music for string orchestra

Originally posted at The Sampler:

Kelly Lovelady“Peace and I are strangers grown.” This is the grave line from Purcell’s opera Dido and Aeneas which begins Ruthless Jabiru’s homage to Australian poet and activist Oodgeroo Noonuccal; a programme exploring Colonial race relations for the inaugural Australia & New Zealand Festival of Literature & Arts this weekend in London.

I will be conducting Ruthless Jabiru in a collection of new music for string orchestra inspired by Oodgeroo’s poem The Past. The poem has been set by Australian composer Andrew Ford combined with excerpts from James Cook’s diaries on encountering the Aboriginal people. For me, one of the most interesting things about this programme is the conflict with the traditional understanding of what we deem to be either old or new when it comes to music. In the context of the First Settlers discovering an unmapped continent, the music we usually think of as old: Byrd…

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Ruthless Jabiru at Union Chapel – an “evocative” programme

Originally posted at Chris Garrard:

When we reflect upon damaged landscapes, areas of environmental disaster, our focus often tends towards the political and the social. For example, the visceral nature of BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has been gradually displaced by arguments about compensation, accountability and pension funds in the media. The aesthetic dimension of the Gulf of Mexico spill or the Maralinga stretch of Australian desert, an area long contaminated by nuclear testing, is what shapes our initial emotional response and subsequently, how we reflect upon our relationship to the environment.

Ruthless Jabiru – London’s all-Australian chamber orchestra – are next week performing a concert at Union Chapel as a form of tribute to the latter landscape, Maralinga land in remote South Australia. The ensemble’s conductor, Kelly Lovelady, explains that she has ‘chosen a programme to evoke the loss and the chemical strangeness which has become a part of that landscape.’ Three new works are bookended by Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings and Arvo Pärt’s Cantus in memoriam Benjamin Britten. We could attach…

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High culture; a thriving market

Originally posted at Slingshot Sponsorship:

Sponsorship of the arts and ‘high culture’ is a topic that has been vehemently discussed within the industry for years.  Indeed, the industry is one that has been criticised for its choice of partners; see BP’s sponsorship of the National Portrait Gallery and Shell’s long standing partnership with the Southbank Centre.  Yet, controversy aside, high culture such as the opera, ballet and classical music has a deep rooted association with large corporates.

It seems, however, that the industry is changing.  Over the past few years there has been an influx of new musicians that have begun to open younger generation’s eyes to high culture arts.  Take for example, musicians such as Olafur Arnalds and Nils Frahm, both of whom are classically trained, yet they appear time and time again on some of the UK’s…

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Kelly Lovelady on Ruthless Jabiru, neo-funk and other grinds

Originally posted at The Sampler:

I haven’t made a mixtape since the 90s but putting this one together for Sound and Music has been the highlight of my weekend.

My chamber orchestra Ruthless Jabiru is performing next Monday 14 October at the Union Chapel. The group is made up entirely of the Australians who play with the major UK orchestras and chamber ensembles. We play mostly music by living composers, including some Australians but not exclusively so, and are planning a robust commissioning stream for the years ahead.

As a conductor, it’s been a great exercise to go back and get some composer context at this point in the project. I’ve come up with a playlist which sets up some of the newer…

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Ruthless Jabiru – a new Australian orchestra

Originally posted at Noted:

Kelly Lovelady is the principal conductor of the UK-based Australian orchestra Ruthless Jabiru. Kelly and I went to university together. She’s all grown up now – I guess it happens to all of us! – and looking glamorous. Heck, she’s even met the Queen!

It’s so inspiring to see what my colleagues have achieved since those early morning scales classes and cheap refectory coffee. Kelly is based in the UK along with loads of other Aussie musicians. In 2011 Kelly mustered a group of expats to form Ruthless Jabiru, named after the Australian stork. They are already making a name for themselves, and this year (according to the critic from Musical Pointers) the orchestra was the highlight of the City of London Festival…

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Electronics with Ruthless Jabiru

Originally posted at Miltonline:

On May 9th, I’ll be playing with the fab (almost) all-Australian Orchestra Ruthless Jabiru under the directorship and baton of Kelly Lovelady.

I’ll be performing live electronics with the 18-piece ensemble, for Brett Dean’s fabulous Carlo. Which interweaves multiple fragments of renaissance composer Carlo Gesualdo’s vocal works (of which I am great admirer) among the live orchestral passages. Originally written for sampler and CD, I’m reworking the electronics for Ableton Live to be triggered via Launchpad (assuming my Push won’t reach me by then). It’s quite a tricky score and electronic fiddle but potentially very powerful…

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