Longer bio (300 words)
Gemma Peacocke is a Brooklyn-based composer from Aotearoa New Zealand. She writes avant-pop music for chamber ensembles, soloists, and orchestras, and she also writes a lot of music with electronics. She has a particular love of interdisciplinary collaborations and often works with visual artists, writers, dancers, theatre directors, and designers.
Gemma’s first album, Waves & Lines, sets to music poems by Afghan women collected and translated in I Am the Beggar of the World: Landays from contemporary Afghanistan by Pulitzer Prize-winner Eliza Griswold. Waves & Lines was released on New Amsterdam in 2019 and has been performed as an evening-length multimedia song cycle at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., Roulette Intermedium and National Sawdust in New York, and Australia’s Melbourne Recital Centre. It will premiere in New Zealand at the Auckland Arts Festival in March 2022.
Gemma is co-founder of the Kinds of Kings composer collective. Described by The New Yorker as “distinguished young creators who work in diverse styles,” the collective focuses on amplifying and advocating for under-heard voices in classical music. The collective was an Artist-in-Residence with National Sawdust in 2019-2020, and a new concerto commission from the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra to write for the orchestra and Grammy Award-winning ensemble Eighth Blackbird will premiere in March 2022.
Gemma has been commissioned by the Auckland Philharmonic, Rochester Philharmonic, Third Coast Percussion, PUBLIQuartet, Bang on a Can, Rubiks Collective, Stroma, and Alarm Will Sound.
A joint Ph.D. candidate in Music and Humanistic Studies at Princeton University, Gemma previously studied with Julia Wolfe at NYU Steinhardt and at the New Zealand School of Music. She lives in Brooklyn with her biggest fan, a standard poodle called Mila (and Gemma’s husband George also lives with them). She also spends as much time as possible in New Zealand.
Shorter bio (100 words)
Gemma Peacocke is an Aotearoa New Zealand-born, Brooklyn-based composer. She has a particular interest in cross-art form and multimedia projects. Her first album, Waves & Lines, which sets poems by Afghan women, was released on New Amsterdam in March 2019. Gemma is co-founder of the Kinds of Kings composer collective which is focussed on amplifying and advocating for under-heard voices in classical music. Gemma has been commissioned by the Auckland Philharmonic, Rochester Philharmonic, Third Coast Percussion, PUBLIQuartet, Bang on a Can, Rubiks Collective, Stroma, and Alarm Will Sound.