Five questions with composer Andrew Hamilton

Andrew Hamilton

Andrew Hamilton

Composer Andrew Hamilton will be featuring in the first set at 4.30pm on Sunday 2 December at New Music Show 3Find out more about Andrew and what inspires him below. And to give you a flavour for what to expect on the 2nd, you can listen to one of his pieces, Music for people who lose people here 

What was the first recording you bought?

Yehudi Menuhin came to Dublin when I was 10 and my Dad brought me to hear him play Beethoven’s Violin Concerto. I fell in love with the piece and saved up and got the LP with Menuhin conducted by Klemperer.  I got to know a lot of music from slow Klemperer LPs.

Can you tell us a little bit about your background? How did you start in composing?
I was a child obsessed by singing everything and then demanded to learn the violin at 7. As soon as I could play without people crying in pain I was making up melodies and started writing them down at the age of 10. It just seemed perfectly normal to write ideas down.

Who or what inspires you?
In no particular order:

Thomas Bernhard, Gerald Barry, Handel, Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, Kevin Volans, Agnes Martin, Flann O’Brien, Louis Andriessen, Ad Reinhardt, Jacques Tati, Beckett, Jasper Johns, Stravinsky, Robert Walser, Mondrian, David Foster Wallace.

If you could pick a favourite project or personal career highlight to date, what would it be?
This is hard to answer but the main thing that makes a highlight is working with committed and kind musicians.

And finally, name your 3 most listened to pieces of music at the moment…
I listen constantly to the first album made by the Irish musician Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill in 1975 called Tríona.

Stravinsky’s violin concerto which I am only starting to understand now.

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg – I went and saw this four times while living in Berlin, it all got a bit out of hand but I am somehow gripped by it.

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