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Sebastian Black is an NZ / British musician, born in 1996 in Colchester, UK. Recent compositions have included Like The Nightingale (for chamber orchestra, the premiere of which he conducted with Danubia Orchestra Obuda), Bunte Blätter (for Ensemble ARS NOVA, premiered in Annecy, France), What Does The Harp Suggest? (premiered at the Budapest Music Center, 2023), We Dance, We Dance (for CEME Festival in Tel Aviv, Israel), and The Mosaique of the Aire (for Het Concertgebouw’s Mahler Festival). 

 

Forthcoming projects include pieces for Chor- und Orchesterakademie des WDR Sinfonieorchesters Köln, the International Ensemble Modern Academy at the Lucerne Festival, and a new orchestral song cycle for Péter Eötvös Foundation. 

He was educated at Chetham’s School of Music and the University of Oxford, before studying with Sir George Benjamin at King’s College London. He is the current mentor composer at Péter Eötvös Foundation in Budapest, studying with Péter Eötvös, and also participates in the Lucerne Festival Academy.

 

He runs Smorgaschord, currently based in Oxford and which consists of a Festival and a Collective. Founded straight after the pandemic, Smorgaschord Festival has seen Mark Padmore singing Harrison Birtwistle, a recital from drupadhamar, a focus on the artist Eva Frankfurther, and various informal pop-up concerts. The 2023 festival sees Danny Driver performing Ligeti, a new piece by Laurence Osborn for Ben Goldscheider, György Kurtág Jr performing the UK premiere of Zwiegespräch (written with his father, György Kurtág), music by Joshua Uzoigwe, and UK premieres from Martin Suckling and Thomas Adès.

 

Smorgaschord Collective, the touring wing of Smorgaschord and in which he often performs as pianist,  is Associate Emerging Artist at Stoller Hall in Manchester. As part of the Collective, he performs recitals this season at venues in Colchester, London, Oxford and Manchester. 

 

His writing about music has appeared in publications in the UK and abroad. A new article on Hans Abrahamsen was published in TEMPO (Cambridge University Press) in 2023. His work is represented on SOUNZ Centre for New Zealand Music. 

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 Image: © Bálint Hrotkó | Péter Eötvös Foundation 

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