Holly’s current portfolio is outlined below. For more detail, click on each heading.
“Phenomenal” (Studio Z)
This outstanding new collection of reflective and inspirational songs draws on African and Celtic folklore and moves seamlessly between folk, world and contemporary classical styles. The songs have been recorded onto an album that will be released on 16 March 2019.
“I am constantly fascinated by what it means to be a human being and these pieces reflect on nine archetypal characteristics of our shared humanity.” (Holly Marland)
The 9 Pure Gifts are listed in an old Scottish incantation collected by Alexander Carmichael during his travels to the Western Isles of Scotland.
I bathe thy palms in showers of wine, in the lustral fire, in the seven elements, in the juice of the rasps, in the milk of honey, and I place the nine pure gifts in thy fair fond face. The gifts of form, voice, fortune, goodness, eminence, charity, integrity, nobility and speech.
Book your tickets for the world premiere at Stoller Hall, Manchester here
Funded by Arts Council England, this project involves creating and performing new artistic works with different groups of older people with dementia and their carers. The project is now in its second phase training volunteers, students and professional musicians for working in care home and hospital settings. The results will be showcased across Summer 2019 leading up to BBC Music Day on Thursday 26 September 2019 and the launch of a UK wide initiative to make music available to everyone with dementia by 2020.
In the first project ideas generated through workshops with groups were crafted into an accessible, secular oratorio for mixed voices accompanied by Kora (West African Harp) and ensemble. This unique work was performed at Manchester Cathedral on Thursday 6 April 2017 at 7pm. The performance was recorded and excerpts from the oratorio will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 4 as part of Dementia Awareness Week in 2018 to raise public awareness about the role of music in Dementia care. You can access the live recording of the performance here
Holly has worked as a commissioned composer for BBC Radio 3 and 4, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester, Manchester Cathedral Choir and RNCM amongst others. Her work fuses folk, wold and contemporary classical genres and often feature voices and Kora.
Holly has an established reputation as a versatile multi-instrumentalist, using the Kora, singing, recorder, percussion and storytelling to delight audiences of all ages and abilities. She was nominated as Best Vocalist at Buxton Fringe Festival in 2016. Recent highlights include
- performances and recordings for BBC Music Day (CBeebies Our Song and Zest Fest)
- broadcasts on BBC Radio 4 (Daily Service)
- recordings of lute songs and kora solos for Boost Music
- performances with Delphic for Manchester International Festival
- tour of New York.
Visit www.koraqueen.wordpress.com for more information.
Holly works as a duo with internationally acclaimed double bass player Michael Cretu, creating an exciting fusion of world, gypsy, folk, jazz and contemporary classical styles. Stringboxes won the Small Ensemble Award at Buxton Festival last year and are in the process of recording their first album. Recent highlights include commissioned performances at the RNCM and Muzeul Taranului Roman, Romania.
Holly pioneered the Music for Health programme at Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester 15 years ago, spearheading the development of music for health practise across the UK through participation in a number of large scale European ventures. An experienced music for health practitioner (and Registered Music Therapist), Holly has since undertaken a number of commissioned projects within healthcare settings ranging from work with children with Autism at Grange School and work with adults with Schizophrenia at Cheadle Royal Hospital to projects with premature babies and their families at Royal Stoke Hospital and the Soundspaces programme in the Paediatric Emergency Department at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital as part of LIME Music for Health where Holly worked up until August 2017.