Exploring the Harmonies of Bells and Music: A Conversation with Composer Helen Ottaway
Blog post about our November 2023 podcast episode.
Helen Ottaway is a composer and sound artist. Her music is inspired by particular places, buildings and the natural world. It involves chance, found sound, walking and frequently has a connection with water or bells. She has composed bell pieces for a trilogy of performance installations inspired by the sunken city of Dunwich and its drowned bells (Cherry Red Heat, RING and Still RInging). In 1999/2000 she was commissioned to write the music for Salisbury Cathedral’s Night Watch Service seeing in the new millennium. In 2012 with her company Artmusic, she created Ring RIng Bell, a sonic survey of bells along the A11 in London and in 2015 she incorporated a tower bell in her orchestral choral work ‘A Field in May’ commissioned by Wadhurst Culture. Recent commissions include Levantina for Palestinian – Jordanian pianist Iyad Sughayer and White Storks String Octet for Shipley Festival in Sussex. White Storks was recently broadcast on BBC Radio 3.
This entry was written in October 2023.
The debate around ringing and music is taken to an entirely new level in this fascinating conversation between show host Cathy Booth and composer Helen Ottaway. Deeply inspired by the sound of bells, Helen’s passion for this shared soundscape has led from the creation of individual musical works to an entire bell-...