Warwick Blair

Warwick Blair

Warwick Blair has been described as 'one of New Zealand's most original musical thinkers' and the 'enfant terrible' of contemporary Antipodean music. Hailing from New Zealand, Warwick Blair has a reputation of one of the most eminent composers New Zealand has produced in years. Having studied under Louis Andriessen and Iannis Xenakis, Blair's music fuses classical and indigenous traditions with electronics in a mesmerizing minimalistic soundscape.

The concept of memory, with the ability of the mind to retain certain information and yet reject other selective memories has fascinated the composer for many years. He explores a musical palette that draws on various seemingly opposing genres or styles, creating a compelling and challenging soundscape. Blair asserts that this collision of styles is his way of searching for a deeper meaning. Louis Andriessen talked about Blair creating a 'universal metaphysical musical language', just as Mahler desired his symphonies to be heard to represent the world. And this is Blair's purpose, to permit eclectic diversity and temporal associations to offer exceptional musical freedoms, where all sound is equally relevant and musical hierarchies are levelled, so that something more abstract, more universal, can emerge.

Blair's work previously appeared at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, South Bank Centre, and he performed together with his ensemble (WBE) at the Tête à Tête Opera Festival in 2013, the Kings Place in 2015, Kingston University, where he was composer in residence, in 2016, and Club Inegales in 2017.

"If Stockhausen had been a Zen Buddhist he could have been Warwick Blair" - Sunday Star Times

"very original and refreshing musical ideas... he is working at a new kind of 'world' or 'universal' metaphysical musical language..." - Louis Andriessen on Warwick Blair

""Blair has developed a unique style of composing... with striking results... it's surprising, fresh and inspiring" - Andrew Claxton, from Dead Can Dance

View Warwick Blair's work on Vimeo here.

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Warwick Blair
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