“My practice is really broad. That’s the only way I can really describe it.”
The Irish composer and performer Jennifer Walshe has achieved international recognition for her unique body of work, and has become a favorite of contemporary music festivals. Walshe presents edgy solo and collaborative performances, mingling a wide variety of media, techniques, and genres. For her pieces, she soaks up everyday culture ranging from poetry, pop music, and boxing to kitsch objects, Twitter tweets, and street situations—everything in Walshe’s surroundings has the potential to become her raw material.
In one of her recent projects, Historical Documents of the Irish Avant-Garde (2015), Walshe created a fictional history of the musical avant-garde in Ireland, including compositions, recordings, articles, and ephemera, with a large team of artists. While her compositions range from electronic sound pieces to theatrical plays and larger-scale operas, she is also an accomplished improv performer and vocalist known for her extended techniques.
Walshe’s virtuosic work has been broadcast, performed, and exhibited around the world in venues and at events such as the RTÉ Living Music music festival, the Ultima Festival, the Donaueschinger Musiktage, and the Museum of Arts and Design. Walshe has received high-profile grants and awards such as an Akademie Schloss Solitude residency, the DAAD Artist-in-Berlin Program, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts in New York, and the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors. She also gives lectures and holds workshops, exchanging creative expertise with students and fellow artists of various disciplines. Walshe is currently Reader in Music at Brunel University London.