Diana Soh (born 1984) is a young Singaporean composer whose musical interest is currently directed at exploring performance interactivity. Her music tends to be characterized by interruptive oppositions between surface activities and passivity with a recent passion for the manipulation of live electronics.Her music has been performed in venues as varied as Takefu International Festival (JP), LSO St. Luke's (UK), Royaumont (FR), Acanthes (FR), Donaueschinger Musiktager (DE), June in Buffalo (US), as well as in Singapore. Her music has also been broadcasted on BBC Radio 3 and France Musique.
She has recently completed her Doctoral studies at the University at Buffalo under the tutelage of David Felder and the IRCAM Cursus 1 and 2 (2011-2013). She currently resides in Paris where she was also the composer-in-residence (2011-2013) at the Conservatoire D’ivry sur Seine in partnership with La Muse en Circuit and Ensemble Le Concert Impromptu. Upcoming projects include commissions for the KLANG Festival in Copenhagen, duo Hevans (Amsterdam), Swedish Clarinetist Robert Ek as well as the SYC Ensemble Singers (Singapore).
"Incantare" for Flute, Clarinet (+ Bass Clarinet), Violin, Cello, Piano and Percussion© Diana Soh "“Incantare” is latin for “to sing”; “to repeat with words”; “to consecrate with spells”. In conceptualizing this piece, I am contemplating the idea of ritualistic processes as extended to the social and cultural implications of today's concert music, as well as the association of language and vocal utterances to, what might be, intangible musical proceedings. I wonder about the process of repetition in theatre versus that in music, as well as what it means to sing in music (literally or with one's instrument). I allow this flow of ideas to then guide my composing on a visceral level. It is interesting to me not only to listen in a concert, but to observe the movements and gestural communications between the performers. Hence, in my pre-composition processes, I am attempting to create a secret drama, not only by imagining the acoustical possibilities of the musical material and its progression, but also the dramaturgy of the eventual performance interactivity and how the material might be visually personified by the instrumentalists.
I am especially interested in experimenting with the intimate sound quality of vocal utterances and am intrigued by the juxtaposition of seemingly opposing sound-types and rhythmic activities. I hope to be able to invite the audience into a process that begins with a meditative state that than increases in its level of energy as if provoked by ritualistic incantations."