Interview by Jennie Punter featured in Musicworks (Summer edition 2015, Issue No. 122)

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Selected composer for ECM+ Génération 2016

ECM Generation Winners 2015


Upcoming residency at Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris

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Upcoming residency at Experimentalstudio des SWR Freiburg

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Selected composer for ICELAB 2014

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November 19th 2015: Flatspin | Stircrazer IV for solo bass clarinet + live mechanics, premiere by Joshua Rubin at the National Sawdust Factory (Brooklyn NY, USA)

December 18th, 2015: Stircrazer III self-performed solo set for transduced piano and bass drums at the Institute for Contemporary Art (ICA) (Boston, USA)

January 14th 2016: New Commissioned Work premiere by JACK Quartet at New Music Concerts (Toronto, Canada)

February 13th, 2016: He Cuts Snow performed by Ensemble Contemporain de Montréal (Montreal, Canada)

March 3rd 2016: New collaboration with Suzanne Farin and Ross Karre as part of the OpenICE series at the Abrons Arts Center (New York, USA) 

April 14th, 2016: Stircrazer II performed by Ensemble Vortex (Geneva, Switzerland)

June 2016: New Commissioned Work premiere by Weston Olencki and Matt Barbier (San Francisco, USA)

August 2016: New Commissioned Work premiere by Distractfold at Darmstadt Summer Course 2016 (Darmstadt, Germany)

August 2016: New Commissioned Work premiere by Heather Roche in Salt Festival (Victoria, Canada)

October 2016: New Commissioned Work premiere by Ensemble Contemporain de Montréal (Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada)

November 2016: New Commissioned Work toured by Ensemble Contemporain de Montréal (14+ performances across Canada, dates TBA)





October 20th 2015: He Cuts Snow performed by oh ton-ensemble as part of the NOIeS Klangpol series at Staatstheater (Oldenburg, Germany)

October 27th 2015: He Cuts Snow performed by sound initiative and Distractfold in MCR concert series (Manchester, UK)

October 30th 2015: He Cuts Snow performed by Sound Initiative and Distractfold (Paris, France)

August 17-21st 2015: Workshop with Distractfold (Manchester, UK)

May 16th 2015: Stircrazer: Hammer + Flutter performance by Ensemble Dal Niente (Boston, USA)

February 28th 2015: Stircrazer II performance by Kivie Cahn-Lipman with ICE Ensemble at Toronto Soundstreams (Toronto, Canada)

November 18 2014: New Work for Vertixe Sonora at the Correspondencias Sonoras festival at Galician Center for Contemporary Art, Santiago de Compostela, Spain)

September 3rd 2014: Stircrazer II performed by cellist Séverine Ballon (unerhörte Musik series at the BKA Theater, Berlin, Germany)

August 2014: Stircrazer II performed by cellist Séverine Ballon (47th Internationale Ferienkurse fur Neue Musik, Darmstadt, Germany)

June 2-5, 2014: ICElab project residency with ICE Ensemble at Mount Tremper Arts (Mount Tremper, New York, USA)

May 5th 2014: He Cuts Snow performed by MEC Ensemble at Zipper Hall (Los Angeles, USA)

April 28th 2014: Slip Trains performed by Mivos Quartet at NUNC Festival (Chicago, USA)

April 27th 2014: He Cuts Snow performed by Ensemble Dal Niente at NUNC Festival (Chicago, USA)

March 18th 2014:  Stircrazer III performed by pianist Stephane Ginsburgh at City University London (London, UK)

March 8th 2014: He Cuts Snow performed by Hand Werk (Cambridge, USA)

October 30th 2013: Stircrazer | Cause Unfold Proceed, solo set for 8 bass drums with live mechanics in shared show with Phillip Schulze (Parkhaus im Malkastenpark, Dusseldorf, Germany)

October 15th 2013: Stircrazer (II) performed by cellist Séverine Ballon at Matrix Festival (Freiburg, Germany)

October 4th 2013: Stircrazer (II) performed by cellist Séverine Ballon (Lyon, France)

July 5th 2013: Stircrazer (III) premiered by pianist Stephane Ginsburgh at Tzlil Meudcan Festival (Tel Aviv, Israel)

April 6th 2013: Stircrazer (I) premiered by cellist Séverine Ballon (Cambridge, USA)

March 2nd 2013: Slip Trains performed by JACK Quartet (Boston, USA)

Oct 13th 2012: He Cuts Snow performed by Ensemble Argento (Cambridge, USA)

May 13th 2012: Spuler performed by Ensemble musikFabrik (Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC), Troy, NY, USA)

May 12th 2012: Spuler performed by Ensemble musikFabrik (Paine Hall, Cambridge MA, USA)

November 6th 2011: Fox Bride performed by Continuum Ensemble (The Music Gallery, Toronto, Canada)

October 2011: NEW RELEASE! Slip Trains released by Quatuor Bozzini as part of 2-disc CD titled A Chacun Sa Miniature (available on Amazon)

August 20th/21st 2011Slip Trains (for string quartet) and Bird in the Well (for large ensemble) performed by Ensemble SurPlus (Stuttgart, Germany)

July 13th 2011Bird in the Well for large ensemble as part of Acanthes Festival (Metz, France)

May 14th 2011ICE Ensemble performing Bird in the Well for large ensemble (Boston, USA)

April 21st 2011: Quatuor Bozzini performing Slip Trains (Montreal, Canada)


For baritone sax, harp, piano, electronics, plus transducers and homemade mechanics

This recording features Vertixe Sonora in the Correspondencias Sonoras Festival at Galician Center for Contemporary Art, Santiago de Compostela, Spain, on November 18, 2014.

Stircrazer II (2013/2014)

For solo cello with bass drums and live mechanics

This recording features cellist Séverine Ballon in Lyon, France October 4th 2013.

He Cuts Snow (2012)

For bass flute / piccolo, bass clarinet, piano, percussion + electronic devices, and cello

This recording features Argento in Paine Hall at Harvard University on October 13th 2012.

Fox Bride (2010)

I wrote this piece working in layers, as though mapping different parts of the same room. While each layer embodies a distinct character, a curious sense of communication emerges between them. The piece evolves around folding and unfolding these layers in various ways, exploring them in relationship and as shifting dimensions of one another.

This recording features the Calithumpian Consort in Paine Hall at Harvard University on November 6th 2010.

Exits and Defences (2005)

Commissioned by Montreal-based Quatuor Bozzini, this piece was inspired in part through an illustration by situationist Guy Debord that maps, in his words, the “atmospheric unities of a city.” Debord first cut a map of Paris into segments experienced as having distinct unities, then spread these pieces out to reflect the sense of mental distance between them. Leaving exaggerated space in place of vehicle traffic and other voids, he then drew patterns of directional arrows to illustrate the most active circulations of foot traffic both through and between distinct regions. With striking economy, the image portrays a web of social conditions that figure into the identity of most cities – exposing patterns of polarities that both influence such conditions and develop through them.

Encountering this image around a time spent exploring early writings of Jane Jacobs, I developed a fascination with how musical relationships and aesthetic forms can be thought of as governed by networks of gravities, comparable, at some level, to those active within city spaces. Rather than suggesting literal framework, this interest provided a backdrop through which the piece developed, influencing many of my choices around distributing material and space, and interlacing microstructures into more open forms.

The integration of metered and un-metered notation developed in appreciation of both how open time feels in juxtaposition to strictly ordered time (a relationship that may be enjoyed by any wandering pedestrian in observing the simplest interactions between traffic lights and the energies and movements of people within a space), and of how removal of pulse serves to intensify communication between players.

Performed by Quatuor Bozzini, this live recording was made at the Dresdner Bank Gesellschaft für Neue Musik (Frankfurt, Germany), August 31st, 2005.

Holding Patterns (2008)

The idea of ‘the wondrous’ struck me early on in the work and teachings of Rudolf Komorous and lingers as a thread in much of my own thinking. Holding Patterns is a pursuit of this sensation within more abstract landscapes of timbre and noise. It is also about amplifying the surface tension of such fields by suggesting perforation or transparency, seeking to create a kind of living fabric through which incongruous elements peek through.

Commissioned by New York based ensemble Till By Turning, this recording was made in concert at the Friends Seminary Meeting House in Manhattan on March 31st 2008.

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Over recent years, I’ve been developing performance systems using modified transducers and self-built devices to extend and amplify resonances of acoustic instruments. Starting from pieces for solo performer with ‘live mechanics’ and developing into expanding groups of players, the resulting series builds around malleable qualities of pulsation, using these as a kind of live connective tissue within the body of a group of instruments. Pulsation is intimate on a cellular level. Magnified or layered, its attributes can shift in quality (hammer-action is rocking-action reoriented). Navigating this terrain of fibrillation and surface tensions, fragilities and blunt mechanisms, these pieces are a means of digging into these visceral aspects of sound that have a permeating intensity in live performance.



Originally from west coast Canada, Sabrina Schroeder writes music for acoustic ensembles, often using modified transducers and self-built mechanics to amplify intensities of resonance without the use of speakers or standard electronics. She’s been an active member of composer-performer collectives presenting scored and improvised music, a back-up-band coordinator for teens in mental health housing, and has taught courses in Sound and Media Art at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. A self-performed set at Parkhaus im Malkastenpark (Dusseldorf) premiered the recent Stircrazer series, developed for mixed performers with homemade electronics. Projects for the coming year include a concert-length mixed media work for ICE Ensemble, a new touring piece for Ensemble Contemporain de Montréal as part of their Générations Project, and a new commission for Distractfold Ensemble to premiere in Darmstadt, 2016. Her own solo performance of Stircrazer III will be featured at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) in Boston this coming December. Other recent collaborations include projects with Vertixe Sonora, Quatuor Bozzini, Dal Niente, JACK quartet, Musikfabrik, handwerk, Ciao Rhino, wasteLAnd, Stephane Ginsburgh and Séverine Ballon. Her plans for this year include time in residence at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris and the Experimentalstudio in Freiburg. She currently lives in Manchester, UK.


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2014 Stircrazer: Hammer + Flutter baritone sax, piano, harp/guitar, percussion, electronics

2013 Stircrazer solo cello + homemade electronics

2012 He Cuts Snow bass flute/piccolo, bass clarinet, piano, percussion + electronic devices, cello

2011 Bird in the Well bass flute, tuba, percussion, harp, guitar, violin, viola, cello, double bass

2010 Slip Trains string quartet

2009 Fox Bride alto flute, bass clarinet, percussion, violin, cello

2009 Measures True electronics with live diffusion

2008 Mobile II solo violin with rubber balls + electronics

2007 Lift bicycles, brake drums, found metal, typewriters, light bulbs, assorted glass, ball bearings, ondes martenot

2007 Holding Patterns violin, viola, cello, bassoon, piano

2007 On Migration voice, double bass

2006 All Snap Flags soprano saxophone, bass clarinet, viola, double bass, percussion

2006 Eve Blossom Has Wheels clarinet in Bb, trumpet in Bb, trombone, vibraphone, percussion

2005 Exits and Defences string quartet

2005 Love Machine voice, socket-set ratchet

2005 These Lines Are Not Hard To Make processed recorded sounds

2004 The Enemy is the Gramophone Mind bicycle, harmonium, amplified toy piano

2004 Otta’s Wheel saw, accordion, double bass, percussion

2003 Simple Machines flute, clarinet in Bb, bassoon, 2 violins, 2 violas, 2 cellos

2003 Good Boot violin, bass clarinet, piano, double bass, percussion

2002 Walking Song 2 flutes, clarinet in Bb, tenor / alto saxophone, trumpet in Bb, horn in
F, 2 trombones, tuba, piano, drum kit, electric guitar, electric bass, 3 whistlers

2002 In 3 solo for voice with tubing, pot lid, glass jar

2002 Red Comfort Suit violin, clarinet in Bb, trumpet in Bb, tenor saxophone, double bass

2002 Song One duo for playpen boards

2002 Song Two duo for electric toy drum, xylophone, toy guitar, megaphone, tricycle

2001 Twenty-one Small Pieces / Riffs flute, clarinet in Bb, bassoon, violin, viola, cello, slide-whistle

2001 They Do Dance Well Together harmonium, glockenspiel

2000 Other Dance Clarinet in Bb, trumpet in Bb, piano, violin

2000 Song for Rain duo for voice, violin, squeaky chair, rubber duck

2000 How Many Times Do You Remember This? 2 clarinets in Bb, bassoon, 3 violins, viola, double bass


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