Book Irantzu on Encore Musicians

  Contemporary Music and Multidisciplinary Art Practice 

Last February, Irantzu presented  "Illusions", a performance about the concept of reality, combining literature and chamber music for Violin and Harp  at High Wycombe with London based, long time friend and Juilliard Alumna Dr. Sabina Rakcheyeva. In June, Irantzu presented Dawn of Shadows and Scintillation at the Old Theatre Royal as part of the Bath Fringe Festival. This performance was based on a person’s journey in the time of a life change and it combines solo harp repertoire from the 20th and 21st centuries, literature, images and light effects. 

Irantzu was one of the four Summer 2018 Artist in Residence at Skimstone Arts in Newcastle. As part of her residency,  she performed contemporary music for solo harp and she took part in a collaborative performance with painter M. Dinis. The main project of the residency was Merriment,  a multidisciplinary arts performance combining literature, music from the 20th and 21st centuries for solo and chamber music settings performed by the Professional Ensemble as well as improvisations created by the Young Artist Collective and the people at the St. Anthony's Day Care Center in Walker. In the same project, Irantzu premiered Robot Picking Blackb'ries, a solo harp piece recently written for her by composer Paul Burnell and G. Robson, actor and Skimstone Arts board member,  read the literary texts.

An advocator of new music, Irantzu has performed John Adams's orchestra pieces under his own baton. She was selected to take part in the premiere of Osvaldo Golijov's Ainadamar at the Tanglewood Music Festival and the American premiere of Gloria, A pig's Tale by HK Gruber conducted by D. Masson at the Aspen Music Festival and School. As a member of the New Juilliard Ensemble for six years, Irantzu premiered more than thirty pieces, among them a piece especially written for the ensemble by Yanov-Yanovsky.

In the past years, Irantzu has worked with young professional composers in NYC and Spain to enrich the harp repertoire, among them Cynthia Lee Wong, who composed Songs of Gernika for Soprano, Harp and String Quartet after a poem by Irantzu in Basque based on Bernardo Atxaga's Markak (2008), Angelica Negron, who wrote Technicolor for Harp & Electronics (2008) and J.P. Berná, whose solo piece Elegía was premiered by Irantzu in 2011. A recording of Berna’s piece is coming out in the following months and Irantzu can often be heard at the WQXR radio of NYC performing Negrón’s Technicolor. As a chamber musician she has premiered the Septet by the Spanish composer A. Lara and Celosias by J.Perez Berna. She has given workshops for composition students at the Nafarroa and A Coruna Superior Music Conservatories. Recent collaborations include feedback on the writing of the harp part of Cynthia Lee Wong’s Shoreline for Oboe, Viola and Harp. Last Summer Irantzu premiered P. Burnell's Robot Picking Blackb'ries, a piece which was written for her. 

During her studies at the New York University, Irantzu was often the harpist of the Film Scoring recording sessions’ orchestra in which not only she gave harp composition feedback to the composition students but also, Irantzu experienced at first hand the creative process of film scoring by watching the accompanied films and making live recordings on set conducted by the composers themselves. Familiarized with silence films, she performed an 80 minutes score written by NYU students and produced by Award Winning composer Ron Sadoff for Rene Clair’s 1928 Des Deaux Timides at the NYC Tribeca Film Festival conducted by G.B. Anderson and narrated by Tribeca’s Artistic Director P. Scarlet meeting worldwide acclaim as well as joining the Real Filarmonia of Galicia in Spain on 'Nosferatu. Eine Symphonie des Grauens', 1922’s film by Murnau and music by J.M. Sánchez-Verdú under the baton of Nacho de Paz.

At NYU, Irantzu was also the harpist at the collaborative arts performance class with composer, educator and multi media artist Dr. John V. Gilbert. As a final project, she took part as an improvising harpist at the Voices of Thalassus multimedia performance. Since then, the combination of the arts have played an important role in Irantzu’s performances, among them Notes on Words, her NYC Debut recital at Weill Hall- Carnegie Hall, was a program of pieces written after literary works, among them: J. Guridi’s La del Alba Seria, written after “Don Quijote”,    C. Lee Wong’s Song of Gernika based on Irantzu’s own poem after B. Atxaga’s “Markak” and the final piece’s performance included a representation of E. Allan Poe’s “The Tale- tell heart”. In 2018, she was the producer, curator and principal harpist of After Thougths, a chamber music program of works with harp accompanied by literature (in Basque, Spanish, Galician, Valencian, French and English) and visual effects presented in Spain. 

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