The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments will collaborate with Aldeburgh Young Musicians to explore a diverse palette of music and sound from hundreds of years ago. We’ll play 15th century dances, ancient Persian melodies, 17th century consort music and old popular music. The Society will bring four trumpet marines for AYMs to try, as well as their own unusual instruments, including the hurdy gurdy, nyckelharpa, santouri and bray harp. Grabbing ideas about sound and music from older styles of music, we’ll make new works, including a Broadside ballad for the 21st century.
About the artists
Clare Salaman is a multi-instrumentalist specialising in unusual stringed instruments, composer and director of The Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments. Her practice includes historically informed performance, collaborations with musicians and artists from the UK and abroad, recording sessions for film and television sound tracks and teaching at the Royal College of Music and the Norwegian Academy of Music. She has written and presented three programmes for BBC Radio 3’s Early Music Show. Her programme ‘Lost Sounds’ has been broadcast three times. Her current work involves researching and reconstructing the trumpet marine, a magnificent, single stringed, two-metre-tall bowed stringed instrument that sounds like a trumpet. This project will culminate in a UK-wide tour of a re-imagining of a ‘rare concert’ given by four trumpet marine players in a London tavern in 1674.
Jon Banks is a specialist on the accordion and Middle Eastern string instruments. As well as playing with the Society of Strange and Ancient Instruments, his group ZRI regularly record and tour throughout Europe, with programmes ranging from gypsy reinventions of Brahms, Schubert and Janacek (recently commissioned by the Boswil Festival in Switzerland) to Charlie Chaplin silent film presentations. Jon also performs with The Jocelyn Pook Ensemble, Notes Inégales, Dufay Collective and Merit Ariane, touring in the Middle East and the Americas. He is also a regular performer and musical director at the Globe Theatre and records for film and TV. Jon lectures at Anglia Ruskin University and publications include a book on early renaissance consort music, chapters for the Cambridge History of Musical Performance and Early Music, also articles on itinerant dulcimer players and Turkish music preserved in historic English clocks; his current research connects Brahms and the first Gypsy recordings.
Grammy-nominated vocalist Vivien Ellis is known for her gutsy, passionate and folk-edged performances of early & folk music with groups such as The Carnival Band, The Dufay Collective and Sinfonye. She performs in Alva, a duo with multi-instrumentalist Giles Lewin, and together they create inclusive, original, and entertaining performances of music & spoken-word for unexpected places. A member of the Natural Voice Network, Vivien is an empowering and experienced teacher, leading workshops with a wide variety of groups. Vivien has a special interest in the role of arts for health & wellbeing, and runs a weekly singing group at the award-winning Dragon Café, a space for wellbeing in the London Borough of Southwark. Vivien has developed a new training module in arts & health for GPs, currently being trialled, and she is an Associate of the Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts & Health, University of Canterbury-Christchurch.
Imogen studies harp with Professors Ieuan Jones and Stephen Fitzpatrick at The Royal College of Music and is an RCM Foundation Scholar supported by a Douglas and Hilda Simmonds Award. Previously she studied with Miriam Keogh, Head of harp at The Junior Royal Academy of Music.
Imogen is a member of Eddie Parker’s Debussy Mirrored Ensemble which performed at multiple venues throughout 2018, including the Cheltenham festival and the Purcell Room, which was broadcast by BBC Radio 3. She will be performing in the ensemble’s next tour, beginning with the launch of their new CD in September 2019.
She is a member of the Britten Pears Orchestra and plays with the Royal College of Music Symphony, Philharmonic and Chamber Orchestras, the Chelsea Opera Group and the London International Orchestra amongst others. She recently performed for the Prince of Wales in a Gala concert, performing with soloists Sir Thomas Allen and Dame Sarah Conolly. As a member of the BPO she played at the Royal Festival Hall and at Aldeburgh Music’s Snape Maltings Concert Hall, conducted by Marin Alsop in 2017, in Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony at the Snape Proms, conducted by Semyon Bychkov in 2016, and in 2011, conducted by Edward Gardner. She has also had the opportunity to work with conductors such as Bernard Haitink, John Wilson, Howard Williams, Jessica Cottis, Sian Edwards and Jac van Steen to name a few.
Imogen is an Aldeburgh Young Musician alumnus, member of AYM’s Exchanging World’s Ensemble, Britten Sinfonia Academy founding member and alumnus and has been a Concordia Young Artist. She was awarded the prestigious Ganzoni Bursary by Aldeburgh Music in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the AYM Programme.
She has performed in masterclasses with Marisa Robles, Anneleen Lenaerts, Jana Boušková, Stephen Fitzpatrick, Cathy White and David Watkins. She has been mentored by Daphne Boden, Eleanor Turner and Royal Harpist Hannah Stone. In 2016, Imogen was selected to study in Switzerland at Harpmasters with Karen Vaughn (RAM) and Irina Zingg (Civica di Scuola Musica Claudio Abbado, Milan).
Imogen has played at events, recitals and weddings in London, Cambridge and around Suffolk. She gave a series of solo recitals in London and Cambridge in 2016 performing at St Peter’s Notting Hill, Munster Square, London and Great St Mary’s Church, Cambridge.
Find out more | Key contact
Matt Wigley – Producer, AYM