For Mira by Cassandra Miller

From the Arraymusic Concert Formless
Stephen Sitarski, violin

Cassandra Miller (1976) is a Canadian composer of chamber and orchestral music, currently living in the north of England. She has twice received the Jules-Léger Prize for New Chamber Music, Canada’s highest honour for composition, for Bel Canto in 2011 and About Bach in 2016. Her cello concerto written for cellist Charles Curtis and the BBC Scottish Symphony in 2015 was hailed as an “unexpected highlight of the festival” (TEMPO). From 2010 to 2013, Cassandra was Artistic Director of Innovations en concert in Montreal.

Over the last 15 years she has received over 25 professional commissions from soloists, ensembles and orchestras both in Canada and across Europe. Her closest collaborators include the Quatuor Bozzini, conductor Ilan Volkov, pianist Philip Thomas, and violinist Mira Benjamin. Other notable performers include the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Oslo Philharmonic, EXAUDI Vocal Ensemble, the London Sinfonietta, I Musici de Montréal, Ensemble Plus-Minus, the late great Ensemble Kore, Ensemble contemporain de Montréal, Continuum Contemporary Music, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, the Victoria Symphony, and Arraymusic.

She holds a B.Mus from the University of Victoria where she studied with Christopher Butterfield, an M.Mus from the Royal Conservatory of the Hague, and is currently pursuing a PhD in Composition from the University of Huddersfield.

For Mira: A dedication to violinist Mira Benjamin, for her down-to-earth, no-nonsense gritty focus. Composing this piece was a play of translations: it is a reworking for violin of a computer-made transcription of an un-plugged performance of Kurt Cobain singing Where did you sleep last night (also called In the Pines – a traditional American folk song often attributed to Leadbelly).


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