Under the Radar: Esther Swift

Exploring themes of ritual, connection, isolation and the natural world, Esther Swift’s acclaimed work Sound Effects is coming to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, write Olaf Furniss and Derick Mackinnon

Esther Swift
Esther Swift

Prolific Edinburgh composer, harpist and singer Esther Swift has been compared to Kate Bush, Anna Meredith and Björk, and creates music across genres, from classical to folk and jazz.

Originally commissioned by Celtic Connections New Voices, her work Sound Effects explores themes of ritual, connection, isolation and the natural world, and she’ll be bringing it to the capital next month as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Designed to be played indoors or out by up to 20 instrumentalists, on the Fringe the work will be performed by Swift on vocals and harp, Emma Lloyd on viola and violin, Matt Collings on electronics and guitar, Patrick Kenny on trombone and alphorn and Owen Williams on percussion, and combines settings of poetry by Edwin Morgan, Rachel McCrum and William Butler Yeats.

Sound Effects takes place in the Pianodrome (a circular performance structure created using 40 unused pianos) at The Old Royal High School as part of the Made in Scotland programme on 10, 17 and 23 August. Visit https://www.madeinscotlandshowcase.com

Olaf Furniss and Derick Mackinnon run music industry seminar and social night Born To Be Wide, www.borntobewide.co.uk Find them on Twitter @olafwide and @newfoundsound

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