Creative Processes with Lotta Wennäkoski

With Lotta Wennäkoski in town for the world premier by the SCO of her piece, Verdigris, we thought this would be a great opportunity for some local students to work with this renowned composer. Jointly leading the course was Fraser Trainer, a London based composer and workshop leader, supported by three professional players.

Collaboration and innovation were at the heart of the three day workshop. With no written notation, all of the music was created by the team and performed on a mixture of instrumentation which included piano, violin, guitars, double bass, trombone, piano, keyboard and various percussion instruments. Fraser and Lotta encouraged the students to use these instruments in as many ways as is possible to create sound, rhythm and texture. Wennäkoski's Verdigris asks for a variety of unusual techniques, including string brushing and quiet voices spoken concurrently with the music. Most of the young people had not experimented using their instruments in these ways and enjoyed the creative freedom this gave them. Every participant, whether professional or student, contributed to a most enjoyable few days of music making. Dr Tommy Fowler, lecturer in composition at Edinburgh College, was delighted with the project and is looking forward to collaborating with the SCO again in the future.