Nic has been at the forefront of the contemporary music scene for over thirty years and was the founder and violist of the internationally acclaimed 

In more recent years Nic’s pioneering and creative spirit has seen him create a new repertoire for the                             an instrument he believes has an exciting future in the ever-developing world of classical music.

Nic is also Head of Strings at                                                                                                  where he leads one of the most dynamic faculties in Europe.

 

In recognition of his creative work in performance and education Nic was awarded title of Professor in 2018.

The group pioneered the development of the string quartet genre commissioning over 200 new works, collaborating with and commissioning from such composers as Steve Reich, Terry Riley, Michael Nyman, Gavin Bryars, Graham Fitkin, Steve Martland, Michael Daugherty, Steven Mackey, John Lord, Stephen Montague, Howard Skempton and Django Bates. They have performed in many of the world’s most prestigious festivals and recorded albums for BMG, Sony, Decca and Signum with whom they released bestselling albums of music by Steve Reich and Philip Glass the latter being describe by Gramophone Magazine as “one of the ten most important CDs of contemporary music”. They were also featured in two BBC documentaries, Classic Quartets at the BBC and Holocaust; A Music Memorial Film from Auschwitz performing Steve Reich’s Different Trains which won a Grammy and a BAFTA.

electric viola

His stunning transcriptions of Steve Reich’s Electric Counterpoint and Terry Riley’s Dorian Reeds featured on his new album Multiple, have not only received critical acclaim from audiences around the world but from the composers themselves; “the idea that Electric Counterpoint would be bowed had never occurred to me. I want to thank Nic for a beautiful surprise. I was moved to tears.” Steve Reich, “I listened to your recording and it sounds so beautiful! It is a really satisfying version of the piece. Congratulations!” Terry Riley.

Other transcriptions include Thomas Tallis’ 40-part motet Spem in Alium presented for performance as an interactive Installation of forty loud-speakers within which the audience travels. The installation was developed and realised in collaboration with sound designer John-Marc Gowans and was premiered at the 2018 Sounds Festival in Aberdeen receiving much critical acclaim. There are plans for a second album too which will feature new commissions including Colin Riley’s Fallen Angel a dramatic work for e viola and electronics, Dominic Murcott’s haunting Black Earth and Hollie Harding’s interactive, immersive work Melting Shifting Liquid World which explores the theme of climate change and ocean pollution. Written for e viola, (audience worn) bone conduction headphones, electronics and string orchestra the work was premiered in 2019 at the National Maritime Museum in London.

As well as his administrative educational and managerial responsibilities he conducts several of the college orchestras including the Trinity Laban String Ensemble with whom he has toured throughout Europe collaborating with many international soloists including Dmitri Ashkenazy, Darko Brlek, Rivka Golani, William Howard, actor Edward Fox, jazz pianist Uri Caine and saxophonist Julian Argüelles with whom he and the ensemble recorded the album As above so below. Nic has also commissioned new work for the group from composers such as Paval Novak, David Matthews, Graham Fitkin, Joseph Phibbs and Douglas Finch.

Credit Graeme MacDonald courtesy of soun