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Cassie Kinoshi’s seed. x NikNak x London Contemporary Orchestra

Cassie Kinoshi’s seed. x NikNak x London Contemporary Orchestra

Thu 07 March 2024

Stage time / 7:30pm

Book Tickets


Silk Street


£10 - £15 + booking fee

Multi-disciplinary and genre-blending composer, arranger and alto-saxophonist Cassie Kinoshi returns to Barbican with her biggest headline show to date with her ten-piece ensemble seed., award-winning turntablist NikNak and London Contemporary Orchestra revisiting her 2023 piece gratitude alongside the premiere of a brand new composition.

The show will also feature literary and sound artist Belinda Zhawi.

On the occasion of International Women’s Day, this show celebrates Cassie Kinoshi as a composer and bandleader, showcasing her multifaceted and genre bending work.

In line with the ongoing demand of recognising women’s exertion for political, economic and social equity, the new composition to be premiered on this show takes inspiration from women’s role in British music history in the Between the Wars Era. It showcases how conflict shapes new social and artistic movements emerging around them, which is constantly relevant to all times in world’s history.

In the development of British Jazz, WW1 period, and its legacies has a significant role. 1919-1939 period sees an emergence of all-female bands in the jazz and dance-band circuit. This was following the outbreak of WWI, when music became an employment and income source for women.

Standing in for male musicians, some wonderful big bands such as Hilda Ward’s Lady Syncopators and Evelyn Hardy & Her Ladies Band had emerged.

With the academic input from Liverpool University Musicologist Prof. Catherine Tackley supporting the research, Cassie Kinoshi takes inspiration from this era and joins up her personal experience as a Black British female composer and bandleader, making a mark in UK’s contemporary music landscape.

Cassie Kinoshi is a Mercury Prize-nominated (2019) and Ivors Academy Award-winning (2018) Berlin/London-based composer, arranger and alto-saxophonist with a focus on creating multi-disciplinarily and genre-blending performance work in various audio-visual contexts. As a bandleader, she writes for and performs with her ten-piece ensemble seed. which features many top London-based improvising musicians.

An in-demand composer for contemporary dance, film, visual-art and theatre, her production credits including the Park Avenue Armory NYC (Euphoria), National Theatre (Top Girls), the Globe Theatre (The Tempest), BalletBoyz (England on Fire and Bradley 4:18) and the Southbank Centre (Drew McConie's The Nutcracker). She has been commissioned by orchestras and ensembles such as London Symphony Orchestra, London Sinfonietta, London Contemporary Orchestra, Manchester Camerata and initiatives such as Renaud Capuçon’s Festival Nouveaux Horizons in Aix-en-Provence, France.

The new work is commissioned by Serious, with funding from 14-18 Now Foundation and with the support of Imperial War Museum.

Visuals by GURIBOSH.

Wednesday 6 March, British Library - Q&A with Cassie Kinoshi: Women’s Role in British Music History

The event is free to attend but booking is recommended.

On the eve of Cassie Kinoshi's headline show at the Barbican join us for a discussion at the British Library with Cassie Kinoshi and University of Liverpool musicologist Professor Catherine Tackley. 

This conversation celebrates and explores the stimulus for a brand-new composition by Kinoshi which will be premiered at the Barbican concert. Her new work showcases how conflict shapes new social and artistic movements emerging around them; highlighting women's role in British music history. Inspiration for the work was driven by Professor Catherine Tackley’s research into the development of British Jazz during the World War 1 period including the emergence of all-female bands in the jazz and dance-band circuit. Find out more here.

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