ISABELLA GELLIS




british/canadian composer, in london


LIST OF WORKS 


for now, it’s best to email me if you would like to see any scores [or hear any recordings that aren’t online]


🎹

SONATA / piano / 8’ / 2018 / ︎︎
a sort of microsonata

SLOW DAY NO. 5 / piano / 2’ / 2020 /︎/ ︎
a song without words, intentionally very playable

THE DISSOLUTE SOCIETY COMPRISED OF ALL SORTS / piano / 35’ / 2021 / 
a suite based on Biber’s Battalia, for Joseph Havlat, premiered at Dartington

🎤


FALLING UP SONGS / soprano, vln, bcl, pft / 3’ / 2016 / ︎
these are good fun, secret text, send me a message if you want to find out

LA LUNE NE GARDE AUCUNE RANCUNE / tenor, fl, cl, bcl, hn, vl, vla, vlc / 16’ / 2018
text by T.S. Eliot

MONTREAL SONGS /medium voice, piano / 14’ / 2021 / ︎
three folk song arrangements in French, English and Yiddish

DEAD HORSES / solo voice  / 12’ / 2021 / ︎
lots of good words in this, text by me, RAM200 commission

I WISH I COULD SPEAK TO YOU / medium-high voice, piano / 3’ / 2021
sweet and sad, text by Dan Sociu

HOW TO SING AND PLAY THE HARP / soprano, harp / 11’ / 2022 / ︎
quite theatrical, some text by Dan Sociu in the middle, lots of syllables either side

 
🎭️


FOR PEACE AND COUNTRY [CHAMBER OPERA] / mezzo-soprano: ebcl, cl, bcl, a-sax, bn, tr, tb, vl, vlc, pft / 16’ / 2018 / ︎︎
libretto from a video my sister made when she was 8, the singer plays 11 different characters (all stuffed toys)


🎺️🎻🪕


AYBROOK STREET / six sight-reading violinists of any ability / 12’ / 2017 / ︎
a made-to-order piece, premiered at The Ditch, Shoreditch Town Hall

HOW TO DRAW / string quartet / 6’ / 2018 / ︎
about lines, written for Dartington International Summer School, premiered there by the Heath Quartet

SLOW DAY NO. 6 / piano + any other instrument, range Db4-B5 / 2’ / 2020
Slow Day No. 5 [see above] but with a bit more going on

SOMETHING PRETTY / harp, piano / 4’ / 2020
brunch music for Olivia Jageurs and Thomas Ang, at the Fidelio Cafe

THINKPIECE / flute, horn, cello + tape / 11’ / 2021 / ︎
verses and choruses with some thoughts about Messiaen at the end

BOWED AND BLOWED / clarinet, violin, cello / 6’ / 2022 / ︎
quite jaunty, lullaby in the middle, Listenpony commission, written for a trio from Explore Ensemble

LURID CUPOLA MOSS / violin, viola, cello / 9’ / 2022 / ︎
earthy and airy, all harmonics, Nash Ensemble commission, premiered at Wigmore Hall

BOWED BLOWED AND HIT / recorder[s], violin, double bass, marimba / 9’ / 2022
flexible[ish] scoring, any blowed instrument, any two bowed instruments, and any hit instrument could play this

STRANGE ISABELLA / wind quintet, piano / 2’ / 2022
peeling piano chords and important horn part, Stomping Ground commission, programmed alongside Isabella Leonarda

AND OTHER THINGS [version 3?] / clarinet [or violin], cello, piano /  10’ / 2022 / ︎
thinking about Charles Ives - the middle was written at Dartington in 2018, the movements either side materialised in June 2022

FRIENDS / kalimba, trumpet / 10-20’ / 2022
bathroom music

VALEDICTIONS / flute, clarinet, horn, cello / 4’30” /2022
a little farewell

🎺️🎺️🎺️🎻🎻🎻🎻🪕🪕🪕🪕


SUBLUNAR / orchestra - no percussion / 8’ / 2019 / ︎
very yearning, + there’s an Ives song somewhere in the middle


  🛠️


PIANO QUINTET, title tbc, premiere 12/22

orchestration of MONTREAL SONGS, for fun

EVENTS


this year
















26/06/22 - FRIENDS @ VAN GOGH HOUSE LONDON

24/06/22 - STRANGE ISABELLA @ ROBINSON COLLEGE CAMBRIDGE W/ ENSEMBLE RENARD + JULIAN CHAN

21/06/22 - STRANGE ISABELLA @ RAM W/ ENSEMBLE RENARD + JULIAN CHAN  

12/06/22 - AND OTHER THINGS @ ST. STEPHEN’S DULWICH W/ TRITIUM TRIO

10/06/22 - STRING ARRANGEMENTS FOR MELTDOWN FESTIVAL @ ROYAL FESTIVAL HALL W/ CHINEKE! + GRACE JONES

18/05/22 - STRANGE ISABELLA @ PUSHKIN HOUSE W/ ENSEMBLE RENARD + JULIAN CHAN

05/05/22 - HOW TO SING AND PLAY THE HARP @ RAM W/ HÉLOÏSE WERNER + ESTHER BEYER

27/04/22 - BOWED BLOWED AND HIT @ RAM W/ TABEA DEBUS

22/03/22 - LURID CUPOLA MOSS @ WIGMORE HALL W/ NASH ENSEMBLE + RAM

03/03/22 - BOWED AND BLOWED @ LISTENPONY W/ EXPLORE ENSEMBLE






previous years
05/12/21 - ORCHESTRATIONS FOR BRIGHTON PHIL @ BRIGHTON DOME W/ JOANNA MACGREGOR, KATHRYN TICKELL AND AMY THATCHER

08/11/21 - DEAD HORSES @ RAM W/ LOTTE BETTS-DEAN

08/08/21 - THE DISSOLUTE SOCIETY COMPRISED OF ALL SORTS @ DARTINGTON FESTIVAL W/ JOSEPH HAVLAT

25/05/21 - MONTREAL SONGS @ NORFOLK & NORWICH FESTIVAL W/ JOSEPH HAVLAT AND LOTTE BETTS-DEAN

21/05/21 - SONATA @ BISHOPSGATE INSTITUTE W/ JOSEPH HAVLAT

12/09/20 - SOMETHING PRETTY @ FIDELIO CAFE W/ OLIVIA JAGEURS AND THOMAS ANG

08/08/19 - FOR PEACE AND COUNTRY [STAGED] @ TÊTE À TÊTE FESTIVAL W/ LOTTE BETTS-DEAN, ELIAS BROWN review here

02/11/18 - SONATA @ RAM W/ JOSEPH HAVLAT

02/10/18 - FOR PEACE AND COUNTRY [UNSTAGED] @ RAM W/ LOTTE BETTS-DEAN + ME CONDUCTING

24/08/18 - HOW TO DRAW @ DARTINGTON W/ HEATH QUARTET

24/08/18 - AND OTHER THINGS @DARTINGTON W/ TRITIUM TRIO

16/11/17 - FALLING UP SONGS @ RAM W/ CHRISTINE BURAS, DAVID SHAW, JAMES GILBERT, THOMAS ANG

16/06/17 - AYBROOK STREET @ THE DITCH W/ THOMAS ANG, JACK GREED, JOSEPH HAVLAT, SHIR LEVY, ROMAN LYTWYNIW, DAVID SHAW


biography;

Isabella Gellis is a British-Canadian composer of acoustic music. She has a fondness for storytelling, and her music often focuses on the sincerity of the absurd and surreal. Training first as a pianist and violinist, she started composing in 2014, a year which saw her concert debut as a composer: a piece for eight hands on one piano at Wigmore Hall, written for the Junior Jaques Samuel Intercollegiate Piano Competition. Between 2015 and 2022, she studied at the Royal Academy of Music, with Edmund Finnis, Christopher Austin and Morgan Hayes, graduating with a Bicentenary Prize for all-round excellence and the Musicians’ Company Priaulx Rainier Prize. Her work has been performed in numerous settings, such as Dartington [Heath Quartet, Tritium Trio], Tête-à-Tête and Norfolk & Norwich festivals, and has been supported by the Hinrichsen Foundation and the RVW trust. Recent highlights include a substantial cycle for pianist Joseph Havlat premiered at Dartington, a trio for members of Explore Ensemble [Listenpony commission], a solo voice piece for mezzo-soprano Lotte Betts-Dean [RAM200 commission], a string trio premiered at Wigmore Hall [Nash Ensemble commission] and a voice-harp duet for Héloïse Werner and Esther Beyer. Outside of these particular realms, Isabella works as a project leader for Lights Camera Score, generating film scores with school children, and as an orchestrator/arranger. She is currently working on a piano quintet for the Maconchy Quartet as part of RETAKE concert series.






take your pick, all credited to photographer Ella Pavlides



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