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Andrew Byrne : Associate Artist

Andrew Byrne's music always betrays a fascination with polyrhythm and is influenced by American experimental music and non-Western traditions.

Random Audio Sample: Fata morgana : mirages on the horizon by Andrew Byrne, from the CD White bone country

Photo of Andrew Byrne

Artist website: http://www.andrewbyrne.com

Andrew Byrne is a New York-based composer, who has written works for film, dance, theater, and the concert hall. His music, which always betrays a fascination with polyrhythm, is influenced by American experimental music and non-Western music traditions and has been described as 'sounding like a weird and wonderful otherworldly folk music'.

Over the last decade, Byrne has developed a number of different types of pieces, all informed by polyrhythmic techniques: 'mobile' pieces (such as Whispers and Cries, 2008, and Lines Towards Another Century, 2006/08) featuring modular structures for variable performers; 'landscape' pieces (White Bone Country, 2007) in which sonic environments are evoked through static polyrhythmic processes; 'folk music' pieces (Ringing for solo percussion, 2008), which suggest a fictional folk music. Byrne tends to write for non-traditional ensembles like percussion instruments, piano and other keyboards, voices, and electronics.

In 2008, his music was performed in Edinburgh (Scotland) by Brake Drum Percussion as part of Sonic Fusion Festival; Melbourne (Australia) by Astra and Speak Percussion; Treviso (Italy) by L'Arsenale; Bath (England) by Media Art Bath and the Elysian String Quartet; and New York as part of MATA Festival. Other recent performances include Dragnet at John Zorn's The Stone in New York; Cradle Song by Either/Or in New York, 23.01.1901/12.07.2005 at Endgame Festival in Melbourne, When Worlds Collide (commissioned by Ethos Percussion Group and the Lark Quartet) at Scandinavia House in New York.

[in]visible voices, a documentary by filmmaker Gideon Boaz, for which Byrne wrote the soundtrack, is currently showing on Israeli cable television and has been screened at film festivals in Canada, US, and Brazil.

His piece Six Dances was recently released on Move Records, recorded by pianist Michael Kieran Harvey, and his White Bone Country: Music for Piano and Percussion is to be released in 2009. In These Great Times was released in Australia in 2000 to critical acclaim.

Other groups to have performed Byrne's music include Speculum Musicae (NY), the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble (Colorado), Open Systems Festival (Germany), Teclas (Italy). In Australia, his music has been performed by Michael Kieran Harvey, Topology, DanceWorks, Seduction Opera and the ByrneBand, among others.

Andrew Byrne — current to September 2009

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Six dances : for solo piano (2002) Commissioned by Speculum Musicae.
Digital sheet music sample Force : for amplified choir & electric ensemble (1999) Commissioned by Astra Chamber Music Society.