New Music 20x12
20 outstanding new works, each lasting 12 minutes, commissioned to feature centre stage of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

Sheema MukherjeeSheema Mukherjee

Bending the Dark

Composer Sheema Mukherjee's piece Bending The Dark has been written from the point of view of a second-generation immigrant tracing the path of the Indian diaspora across continents. It is performed by The Imagined Village, a band that unites some of England's finest traditional musicians alongside leading figures on the UK Asian and alternative, electronica music scene.

New Music 20x12 is the brainchild of Jillian Barker and David Cohen who wanted to put new music at the heart of the Olympic celebrations in 2012. It is delivered by PRS for Music Foundation in partnership with BBC Radio 3, London 20x12 and NMC Recordings. For a full list of funding partners click here.

 

About Sheema Mukherjee

Sheema Mukherjee absorbed North Indian classical music and the western tradition side- by-side and studied Indian classical music with Pandit Nikhil Banerjee and sitar with Ustad Ali Akbar Khan in the USA. Brought up between Britain and India, she has a rich background to draw on in her own compositions and collaborations.

Sheema works across many styles and genres from eastern and western classical music to jazz, pop and dance music. She has collaborated with internationally renowned artists such Natacha Atlas, Transglobal Underground, Noel Gallagher, Cornershop, the Bulgarian Folk singer Yanke, Simon Emmerson from the Afro-Celts, and UK saxophonist Courtney Pine. She is currently working as part of The Imagined Village project featuring Martin and Eliza Carthy, Billy Bragg, Benjamin Zephaniah and a host of other folk/roots luminaries.

Sheema has toured the world with a variety of ensembles. Key performances include the World Music Festival (Chicago), Montreux Jazz Festival, the Olympia-Halle (Munich), supporting Jimmy Page and Robert Plant throughout their European tour (1998) and the Olympics Arts Festival for Sydney 2000. She also makes regular appearances at WOMAD (UK) with her own ensembles.

A versatile and creative musician, Sheema works both as a composer and as a collaborator: recently she has worked with cross-genre performance collective Cascade: Beyond Eight Bars, and written for full orchestra, electric and acoustic guitars, bass guitar, kit drum and tablas in two new pieces of theatre (Non-contact Time and Gluey and the Lion) for the Northern Exposure Festival at the West Yorkshire Playhouse.

 

The Imagined Village

The Imagined Village is a folk musical project founded by Simon Emmerson of the Afro Celt Sound System. It is intended to produce modern folk music that represents modern multiculturalism in the United Kingdom and as such, features musicians from a wide variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds. The name of the project comes from the 1993 book The Imagined Village by Georgina Boyes.

The project started in 2004, and led to the release of an eponymous album in 2007 by a collective of artists on Real World Records. Some of the tracks on it are modern re-interpretations of traditional folk songs.

The Imagined Village E.P. was released earlier in 2007, and is a remix of the album tracks. The 2008 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards voted "Cold, Hailey, Rainy Night" as best traditional track.

In 2009, the project moved to a new record label, ECC Records, and a second album, Empire & Love was released in January 2010.

 

 

Bending The Dark

bbcThis performance of Bending the Dark by The Imagined Village was recorded by the BBC on 15 July 2012, and broadcast on BBC Radio 3 on 25 August 2012.

 

This work is available on NMC in mp3 and FLAC download formats. (See below)

VIDEO

Sheema Mukherjee and The Imagined Village

MUSIC MAP

FUNDERS

New Music 20x12 is the brainchild of Jillian Barker and David Cohen who wanted to put new music at the heart of the Olympic celebrations in 2012. It is delivered by PRS for Music Foundation in partnership with BBC Radio 3, London 20x12 and NMC Recordings. For a full list of funding partners click here.

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