Deirdre McKay's 'sable qui glisse' performed at the ISCM World New Music Days festival in South Africa

Photo by Rory Moore.

On Saturday 2 December, CMC Composer Deirdre McKay's sable qui glisse received its South African premiere at the 2023 ISCM World New Music Days Festival, performed by the Cape Town Camerata conducted by Leon Starker. 

Following an international call for works to represent the national sections of the ISCM, the Contemporary Music Centre  - the Irish section of the ISCM - put forward six nominated works to the organizers of the 2023 festival. The six nominated works were by composers Alex Dowling, Amanda Feery, Dave Flynn, Deirdre McKay, Kevin Volans and Ian Wilson.

Sable qui glisse (2019) by Deirdre McKay was selected by the festival organizers and presented at the 2023 World New Music Days festival. 

This piece was conceived as a partner work to an earlier commission from [Chamber Choir Ireland], setting Beckett’s ‘Dieppe’. There’s a handful of Beckett’s poems from this period which catch the breath. The shifting sands, a direct address to the transience of the passing moment ‘cher instant je te vois’, all shot through the prism of a damp, natural world of sea and rain, shingle and mist: an outward-looking lens staring back into the internal. Commissioned by New Music Dublin for premiere by Chamber Choir Ireland, conducted by Grete Pedersen. The text used with kind permission of the Beckett Estate.

- Deirdre McKay

Sable qui glisse (2019) features on CMC's 2022 promotional release new music::new Ireland four, available to listen and download free from Bandcamp.

Deirdre McKay's attendance at the 2023 ISCM World New Music Days Festival was supported by Culture Ireland.

World New Music Days

The World Music Days Festival is an annual meeting of the ISCM, organised and solely funded by different sections each year, as a platform for musical exchange and a showcase of world contemporary music, without prejudice or bias on differences in musical expressions, styles, genres or media. It aims to be a meeting place for organisations, performers and composers around the world. World Music Days takes place in consecutive days in the host country and can be organised in any format which suits the artistic and practical preferences of the organiser in accordance with ISCM Statutes, reflecting the diversity of contemporary music. The festival strives to represent all legitimate members of the ISCM in one way or another through the activities of its programmes, including performances, seminars, exhibitions, and networking.