The four composers chosen for the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain's (NYCGB) 2022 Young Composers scheme are Sun Keting, Thomas Metcalf, Claire Victoria Roberts, and Ben Nobuto.
The all-expenses covered initiative was created to support composers in the early stages of their career, which are formative in the development of a fully-fledged composer. Along with mentoring, each composer will be awarded a personal Innovation Fund of £500 to undertake their own creative initiatives.
The Young Composers scheme is especially tailored to help emerging composers from a wide range of backgrounds, races, and musical genres. According to NYCGB's press release, they are "striving to build an inclusive community" in the hopes of achieving a "meaningful and balanced representation in the areas of composition for vocal ensembles." The scheme "strongly encourage(s) young people of Black, Asian & ethnically diverse backgrounds to apply for this programme."
NYCGB Artistic Director and composer Ben Parry will lead the professional mentoring. Previous Guest mentors include Errollyn Wallen, John Rutter, Roxanna Panufnik, Richard Allain, Anna Meredith, Alexandra Harwood, Jonathan Dove, and Eleanor Alberga.
A brief introduction to each composer:
Ben Nobuto is a British-Japanese composer whose works often explore themes of attention and fragmentation, drawing on internet culture and popular idioms in a playful, ironic and surreal manner. His works have been performed by Manchester Collective, Manchester Camerata, Ligeti Quartet, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, and broadcast on BBC Radio 6, Times Radio, and Resonance FM. He was recently selected for Sound and Music’s 2021 ‘New Voices’ scheme.
Sun Keting is a London-based Chinese composer and artist. Her recent works focus on performance arts and instrumental sound exploration, combining Eastern cultural, spiritual, and philosophical elements. Sun's music has been performed in the U.K., U.S., Europe and Asia. She has composed music for the London Symphony Orchestra, The Silk Road Ensemble, the Chroma Ensemble, the Tangram, The Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra, and The National Chinese Orchestra Taiwan. She has collaborated on projects with many established artists and organizations such as The Wellcome Collection, The Bristol School of Animation, and the Leeds Lieder Festival.
Described as writing "music of mood and muscle" by Wales Arts Review, Claire Victoria Roberts is a composer, vocalist and violinist who creates richly-scored, glimmering music, that draws upon diverse influences: from her love of lyrical jazz, to traditional fiddle music, and impressionist orchestral textures. Claire is the winner of a Royal Philharmonic Society Composition Prize 2019-2020, as well as 2017 winner of the Mathias Composition prize, and 2019 winner of a Francis Chagrin award. She has been broadcast on Radio 3, Radio Wales and Radio Cymru.
Thomas Metcalf is a composer and researcher based in Oxford. He recently completed his DPhil (PhD) in Music at Oxford University, where he was researching extensions of the ancient concept of ‘ekphrasis’ (description) to contemporary music. His work has appeared in various conference settings across Europe as well as being published in several academic journals. This research forms a central part of Thomas’s compositional approach, and recent projects have included pieces for the Kreutzer Quartet, Lonelinoise Collective, Horizon Voices, and Psappha. In 2021, Thomas’s music was performed across the UK, as well as in the Netherlands, Switzerland, and Mexico.