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International Composer Pyramid



Coups de Vents, a European association dedicated to Research, Education, and Creation for Wind Music (F), and Sounds New – Contemporary Music Festival of Canterbury (GB) - joined forces and created the INTERNATIONAL COMPOSER PYRAMID (ICP) project in 2009. Coups de Vents opted for this development approach to make contemporary composers of the best level better aware of and more interested in wind ensembles.

Too few works were written for these orchestral groups and few avant-garde composers took interest in harmony orchestras. This repertoire should fall in line with actions conducted to support the progress of wind bands and wind ensembles in our region. Research, experimentation and creation should become key concerns for conductors and musicians in these instrumental ensembles.

Artistic directors Philippe Langlet and Paul Edlin have imagined and created an original programme which offers young composers about to become professional artists to work in pairs (France/Great-Britain) under the supervision of coaches-composers enjoying world-wide reputation on both sides of the Channel. Their works can be prepared in master-classes and workshops and later played and examined at public concerts. Following these master-classes, each composer will finalise a work, with the orchestration of his/her choice, in compliance with rules, submitted to a panel of French and British experts at public concerts planned in December both in France and Great Britain. This was how a project combining two cultures, two different modes of teaching and writing music could materialise and yield significant effects.

The last concerts of the 3-year cycle, took place at the end of 2012 : one at Canterbury (United Kingdom) and one at Boulogne sur Mer (France). The orchestra performing the final works of the International Composer Pyramid competition led by Mark Foster was composed of French musicians for the wind instruments and English musicians for the strings, piano and percussion.

8 works, 8 world premieres, stemming from a project combining two cultures and two different teaching and composition styles, were performed for the competition in the presence of a jury comprising English and French prominent figures. The winning piece of work, composed by Dimitris Economou, will be published shortly by Peters.                                                       

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