Chair in Music
Pete Stollery, BMus(Hons), MA, PGCE, PhD is Professor of Electroacoustic Music and Composition. He studied at the University of Birmingham with Jonty Harrison and was a founding member of BEAST (Birmingham ElectroAcoustic Sound Theatre). His compositions are performed around the world at major festivals and conferences and most works are available on CD. A solo DVD-A (Un Son Peut En Cacher Un Autre) was released in 2006 on empreintes DIGITALes, Montreal and a further CD published in 2011 (Scenes). He is also passionate about education and working with young and emerging composers.
When I first became involved in electroacoustic music, I was fascinated with the way that technology could allow the composer to work directly with sound, in a similar way to a sculptor or potter working with his/her materials. The ability to manipulate material at this basic level is, of course, a central aspect of my music for tape alone, which falls aesthetically very much within the traditions of the musique concrète and acousmatic music of France and Québec. This can be seen most obviously from later pieces which are concerned with the interplay between the “meanings” associated with sounds and these sounds as pure sonic material, divorced from any mimetic connotation. My music involving live performers also uses these ideas, particularly during the creation and subsequent development of materials and structures within the compositional process - a vocal or instrumental gesture might be generated through improvisatory techniques, much in the same way as I might improvise with sound transformations in a studio environment.
One of my main concerns as a composer is to communicate as clearly and succinctly as possible to the audience. This is not to imply that I am attempting to present only “accessible” music to audiences, rather that I wish to provide opportunities for the listener to become aware of the inner workings of sound objects. Thus, there is little in my music which can be likened to “broad brush-work” - attention to detail and the positioning of sound objects within a prescribed time frame is paramount, allowing the listener to become aware of the intrinsic qualities of the sounds themselves.