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Murphy, Kelly-Marie

Murphy, Kelly-Marie (1964-)

Kelly-Marie Murphy was born in Sardinia, Italy and grew up on Armed Forces bases all across Canada. She began her studies in composition at the University of Calgary and later received a Ph.D. in composition from the University of Leeds in England. After living and working for many years in the Washington D.C. area, she is now based in Ottawa. In addition to many academic scholarships awarded in Canada and England, Dr. Murphy has also won prizes for her music. She was awarded first prize in the New Works Calgary Composer's Competition in 1992; was shortlisted for the Cornelius Cardew Composition Prize, and was awarded first prize in the Bradford Young Composer's Competition for Electro-Acoustic Music in Dance in 1993; won first prize and the People's Choice Award at the CBC Young Composer's Competition in 1994 (string quartet category); received 2 honorable mentions in the New Music Concerts competition in 1995; earned fifth place at the International Rostrum of Composers in Paris in 1996 for her first orchestra piece, From the Drum Comes a Thundering Beat; was awarded first and second prizes in the Maryland Composer's Competition at Loyola College in Baltimore, 1998; was awarded third place in the Alexander Zemlinsky Prize for Composition in 1999 for her work, Utterances; and won first place in the International Horn Society's Composer's Competition in 2001 for Departures and Deviations. Dr. Murphy has completed short residencies at the Snowbird Institute for the Arts, Utah; Tapestry Music Theatre/Canadian Opera Company, Toronto; rESOund Festival of Contemporary Music, Edmonton; Strings of the Future International String Quartet Festival, Ottawa; Encounters/Soundstreams, Toronto; The Banff Centre for the Arts. Dr. Murphy's music has been performed in England, Poland, Spain, Japan, Russia, and across North America by outstanding soloists and ensembles, and has had radio broadcasts in 22 countries. She is the recipient of many commissions from the CBC and the Canada Council for the Arts, and has written for some of Canada's leading performers and ensembles including the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Nexus, Shauna Rolston, James Campbell, the Gryphon Trio, Alcan String Quartet, Rivka Golani, Judy Loman, Le Quatuor Arthur-LeBlanc and James Sommerville.

Living Metal, Continuous Poses (2002)

The inspiration for this piece comes from the processes involved in shaping, polishing, or distressing metal into works of art. I have come to admire artists such as Alberto Giacometti, Alexander Calder, and a collective known as Live Metal Works, and am intrigued by my own perception of what is involved in making a work of art out of metal. It is fascinating to me that through violent means such as extreme heat, hammering, and hot rasping, works of beauty, whimsy, and profound significance can be created. Every creative effort goes through a crucible of sorts, but in the field of metal work, it is a literal and integral part of the process. Much of the 5-movement piece deals with the rhythmic and agitated nature of working with tools such as intense heat, and hammers, but one might also hear the long lines and delicate quality of metallic threads catching the light, or being spun out ever longer. Living Metal, Continuous Poses was commissioned by the Molinari Quartet through a grant from the Canada Council for the Arts. It was completed in January, 2003 for presentation on The New Generation concert, presented May 23, 2003. -

Kelly-Marie Murphy



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