Oliver Coates, cello
Coates is a master of his instrument, who had me transfixed for the duration of the performance. This was virtuosity in the extreme – and he made it seem easy. He is, without a doubt, someone who has a dazzling career ahead of him. Carla Rees, review of Wigmore Concert, Jan 08 for MusicWeb International
Oliver Coates plays the cello and is in demand throughout the UK and internationally. In the past year as a solo artist he has performed in China, Russia, Brazil and across Europe and made his New York debut at Le Poisson Rouge in September 2014. He was winner of the Royal Philharmonic Society Young Artist Award 2011 and has been an Artist in Residence at Southbank Centre since 2010.
Oliver has performed concertos with Aurora Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia, London Contemporary Orchestra and the Neojiba Youth Orchestra of Bahia. He has performed chamber music with Angela Hewitt and Richard Tognetti. Oliver is known for his collaborations with some of the leading musicians of our time in all genres. He has performed Music for 18 Musicians with Steve Reich and has worked on solo repertoire with many of the great modern composers, including Helmut Lachenmann, Jonathan Harvey, Kaija Saariaho, Sofia Gubaidulina, David Lang, and Thomas Adès. Many of the leading young composers have written music for him, including David Fennessy, Andrew Hamilton, Emily Hall, Anna Meredith and Larry Goves. His ongoing collaborations with Mica Levi (Micachu) and Jonny Greenwood have led to film scores, concert projects and solo cello commissions.
His first full-length solo album Towards the blessed islands was released on 12-inch vinyl, CD and download, 9/12/13 on PRAH recordings The Wire magazine described it as ‘an itinerant love letter to the instrument, an album of deep resonance and fleeting harmonics’. The Guardian reviewed it as having ‘subtly devastating results’, ‘like a message delivered over a sea wind’.
More recently he has been exploring different approaches to space, architecture and music making. For the Britten Centenary he made a project with the field recordist Chris Watson based on music by Britten and environmental sounds in Suffolk. He also built an installation called The Seafarer in the dark corridors around the Royal Festival Hall boiler room, using music by Messiaen and projecting old Anglo-Saxon poetry.
In addition to solo sets and recitals for festivals around the world Oliver performs as a principal cellist with many of the UK's leading orchestras. These include Aurora Orchestra, London Contemporary Orchestra and guest spots with London Sinfonietta, Britten Sinfonia, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra.
The British Council and PRSF have selected Oliver to undertake a new artist residency in Hong Kong during 2014. He will devise and record new material, collaborate with local artists, and perform the outcome in China and UK.
the hermes experiment
Héloïse Werner, soprano
Oliver Pashley, clarinet
Marianne Schofield, double bass
Anne Denholm, harp
‘Unapologetically adventurous and fearless, these new kids on the block are shaking up the contemporary classical world through their lively performances and diehard commitment to new music.’ – Nonclassical
The Hermes Experiment is an ensemble of four young professional musicians passionate about contemporary and experimental music, inspired to create something innovative and unique.
Based in London, The Hermes Experiment comprises Héloïse Werner (soprano), Oliver Pashley (clarinet), Marianne Schofield (double bass) and Anne Denholm (harp), who met whilst studying music at Cambridge University. Capitalising on their deliberately idiosyncratic combination of instruments, the ensemble performs a variety of experimental compositions and arrangements, as well as venturing into live free improvisation.
The Hermes Experiment seeks to promote contemporary composers, regularly commissioning new works. The ensemble also strives to create a platform for collaboration with other artists, and future plans include a ‘musical exhibition’ with photographer, Thurstan Redding.
The Hermes Experiment are winners of the Nonclassical Battle of the Bands 2014, and have been selected to take part in this year’s UK Young Artists Festival in Leicester.
The Hermes Experiment are winners of the Nonclassical Battle of the Bands 2014, and have been selected to take part in the 2014 UK Young Artists Festival in Leicester.
'It was an enormous pleasure to write for The Hermes Experiment, and to work with them: they are four immensely talented young musicians with bags of enthusiasm and energy, and an impressive commitment to the material they perform. I think they have a very bright future.' – Giles Swayne