Crash Ensemble, Ireland’s foremost new music ensemble, brings you groundbreaking new works from some of the world’s most distinctive living composers. The programme includes WORLD PREMIERES written especially for the ensemble by the legendary Glenn Branca and Kevin Volans, as well as work from Nico Muhly and a new arrangement for Crash by Donnacha Dennehy.

Glenn Branca

Glenn Branca is the man behind avant-garde masterpieces, The Ascension (1980) and Indeterminate Activity of Resultant Masses (1981), which provided formative inspiration for New York performers like Thurston Moore and Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth, and Michael Gira of Swans in the late 1970s. ‘Thought’ is Branca’s first commission for Crash Ensemble, in which he takes “a fresh and appealing approach to how music could sound in the 21st century”. 

“I thought, ‘I’m gonna try this, man, I’m going to have these f—ing instruments kicking ass'” – Branca on Symphony No. 15: Running Through the World Like an Open Razor

Kevin Volans

Kevin Volans is widely acknowledged as ‘one of the most remarkable musical minds of our time’. After a productive collaboration with the Kronos Quartet in the 1980s, Volans’ Kronos discs, ‘White Man Sleeps’ and ‘Pieces of Africa’ broke all records for string quartet sales – Africa was number one on the US Classical and world music charts for 26 weeks. ‘Looping Point’ has been specially written for Crash Ensemble by Kevin Volans in 2012.

Nico Muhly

Nico Muhly’s ‘Drones, Variations, Ornaments’ is “music in constant transformation”, an offbeat offering for Crash Ensemble from this genre-defying young composer. Muhly has written opera, choral works and filmscores, while also producing and writing arrangements for Antony and the Johnsons, Björk, Sam Amidon and Grizzly Bear. ‘Drones, Variations, Ornaments’ was written by Muhly for Crash Ensemble in 2011 with support from the Arts Council.

Donnacha Dennehy

Donnacha Dennehy has created a unique arrangement of his 2010 piece ‘Disposable Dissonance’ for Crash Ensemble, which will receive its first performance on November 2nd.

Dennehy, founder and co-artistic director of Crash Ensemble, has received international critical acclaim for his work. His music has been described as “magnificently energetic” (New York Times), and “a wonder to hear” (Paul Griffiths). The Guardian, in a 5-star review of his recent Nonesuch album Grá Agus Bás called it a piece of “startling freshness”. 

‘Thought’ is presented as part of Crash Ensemble’s Music Residence at Project Arts Centre.


Nico Muhly:  Drones, Variations, Ornaments* (2011)

Donnacha Dennehy: Disposable Dissonance (Re-written 2012 for Crash Ensemble)

Kevin Volans: Looping point* (2012) WORLD PREMIERE

Glenn Branca: Thought* (2012) WORLD PREMIERE

*Written for Crash Ensemble

Venue: Space Upstairs, Project Arts Centre

Date: Friday 2nd November 2012

Time: 8pm

Tickets: €20/ €18 concession. 10% discount on groups

Book Online :

Book by Phone: 01 8819613

Book in Person: Project Arts Centre, 39 East Essex Street, Temple Bar, Dublin (Mon-Sat, 11-7pm)


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