Trish Clowes

Saxophonist and composer Trish Clowes has been described as “an improviser to be reckoned with” (Downbeat Magazine) and “one of the most agile and original jugglers of improv and adventurous composition to have appeared in the UK in recent times” (The Guardian). Lauded for her imaginative approach to improvisation and composition, Clowes is currently an Associate Artist at Wigmore Hall, and has released six critically acclaimed albums. Clowes’s band MY IRIS – with Chris Montague, Ross Stanley and James Maddren – represents the front rank of the contemporary UK jazz scene and has been hailed as “the jazz of the future.” (Augsburger Allgemeine)

Notable career performances include the Barbican, Toronto Jazz Festival, Rochester International Jazz Festival, Royal Festival Hall, Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club, Wigmore Hall, Celtic Connections (with BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra), Women in (e)motion Festival (Germany), National Opera House (Ireland), Galway Jazz Festival, and broadcasts for BBC 2 Proms Extra, BBC Radio 3 and Radio Bremen. Clowes is a soloist on various recordings for Signum Classics and NMC Recordings, with Orchestra of the Swan, BBC Concert Orchestra (Joe Cutler’s saxophone concerto), and Cevanne Horrocks-Hopayian with the London Symphony Orchestra. Recent commissions include writing for the London Sinfonietta (a Sinfonietta Short for solo bass, and their Sound Out projects), BBC Radio 3 (BBC Postcards from Composers, and BBC Concert Orchestra), Onyx Brass, and Architecture of Autonomy (producing music for a dance-film). Clowes’s music video ‘Abbott & Costello’, directed by Rose Hendry, was shortlisted for Voice of a Woman Awards 2019, and screened at Cannes Lions Festival and Aesthetica Short Film Festival.

Born in the early 80s, Clowes was raised in Shrewsbury, Shropshire and moved to London in 2003 to study at the Royal Academy of Music – she was later honoured as an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music (2013). From 2012-14 Clowes was a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist, and during that time she was commissioned by BBC Radio 3 to write for the BBC Concert Orchestra, a piece that won her a British Composer Award in 2015. Clowes holds a PhD in Musical Composition, awarded by Birmingham City University (Royal Birmingham Conservatoire) in 2020. Her research project was centred around the activities of her new music festival Emulsion , exploring collective practice and audience interaction through her compositions, and was funded by a STEAM Scholarship (2016). Clowes is an ambassador for the charity Donate4Refugees , and teaches regularly for the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Royal Academy of Music, and Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.

My Iris

My Iris is an intense and thrilling band that represents the front rank of the contemporary UK jazz scene. Lauded for her imaginative approach to improvisation and composition, saxophonist Trish Clowes provides her bandmates Ross Stanley (piano/Hammond organ), Chris Montague (guitar) and James Maddren (drums) with a unique platform for individual expression, delivering driving grooves and lingering melodic lines, seamlessly morphing between earthy restlessness and futuristic dreamscapes. The band has released two studio albums on Basho Records (‘My Iris’ and ‘Ninety Degrees Gravity’), the later of which has been described as a “high intensity, mercurial workout” by Giovanni Russonello for Downbeat Magazine, providing “further evidence that Clowes is an improviser to be reckoned with.” Clowes collaborated with film director Rose Hendry to create a music video for the album track ‘Abbott & Costello’ – inspired by characters in Denis Villeneuve’s science fiction film ‘Arrival’ – that has recently been screened at the Cannes Lions Festival and shortlisted for The Voice Of A Woman Awards 2019. My Iris has toured internationally and made broadcasts for BBC Radio 3 and Radio Bremen. Notable recent performances include Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club, Rochester International Jazz Festival (Made In The UK showcase), Toronto International Jazz Festival, and the Barbican for the London Jazz Festival, supporting Avishai Cohen. In April 2020, Clowes self-released an album of live recordings taken from performances for Moving On Music in Belfast and Galway Jazz Festival. My Iris is a band “going places.” (All About Jazz)

Trish’s new My Iris album A View with a Room released on April 22, 2022.

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Emma Perry


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