2020 Festival Welcome

Welcome to soundfestival 2020

This year we made the decision to split the festival and put on two four-day events – one at the end of October 2020 and another in January 2021. 

Because of the current government restrictions around audience attendance at live performances, the October mini-festival will be delivered entirely online, but we are hopeful that the situation will change to allow us to mount some much needed live new music performances in January.

Our partners this year are Aberdeen Arts Centre, who have opened their doors so that we can present our performances from their stage; Citymoves who have given us use of a space for streaming our non-live performances; and our friends at shmu, who will be masterminding the streaming of all our performances. We are incredibly grateful to them for all the effort they have made to help us make this happen.

For the music, we have managed to keep our theme of “endangered instruments” going, which this year is the French Horn. BBC Young Musician of the Year Finalist Ben Goldscheider will perform with Huw Watkins and in a concert featuring horn and electronics, including the amazing Concert Etude by Esa-Pekka Salonen which Ben played in that 2016 final. He will be joined by the Guild of Hornplayers for an amazing concert for multiple horns including Timothy Jackson’s Three Worlds. Our Ensemble in Association Red Note will be performing a new commission by Ben Lunn and there will be a solo bass and contrabass clarinet recital from Sarah Watts. The festival concludes on Sunday 25 with a performance by composer/vocalist Laura Bowler and flautist Ruth Morley.

As well as live streamed events, there will be other activity online including films, exhibitions and recordings of performances for you to enjoy. 

We hope you enjoy October’s online offering and look forward to seeing you in January– hopefully!

Pete Stollery, Chair of sound & Fiona Robertson, Director of sound

What's coming up


12PM | Ruth Morley, flute + Alistair MacDonald, live electronics | LIVE PERFORMANCE + Q&A
4PM | Grey Area / Crash Ensemble | FILM + Q&A
5.30PM | Le Sirenuse | FILM + Q&A
8PM | Th’first munth is th’wurst iv awl by Ben Lunn | WORLD PREMIERE PERFORMANCE + Q&A
10.30AM | New music for organ with Dr Roger Williams | FILM + Q&A
12PM | Ben Goldscheider, horn and Huw Watkins, piano | LIVE PERFORMANCE + Q&A
4PM | Lonesingness / EXAUDI | LIVE PERFORMANCE + Q&A
5.30PM | Pete Stollery / Covid-19 sound map | TALK + Q&A
8PM | Digital Horn / Ben Goldscheider, horn and Pete Stollery, electronics | LIVE PERFORMANCE + Q&A
2PM | The Big Picture / Judith Weir | FILM + Q&A
4PM | Guild of Hornplayers featuring Ben Goldscheider and Pip Eastop | LIVE PERFORMANCE + Q&A
8PM | Ten Wee Drams / Sarah Watts | LIVE PERFORMANCE + Q&A
12PM | Gaia / Ruth Morley, flute and Laura Bowler, vocalist | WORLD PREMIERE PERFORMANCE + Q&A

Events will be broadcast on our YouTube channel and will also be available to watch on our website.

10AM-4PM | Le Sirenuse film installation | Cowdray Hall, Aberdeen Art Gallery