Tag Archives: Ilse de Ziah

Marriage d’Amour – New arrangement

If you’re like me you’ll be eager to get started on a new party piece for those end of year events!

This week I have completed a new solo cello arrangement of Marriage d’Amour by Paul de Senneville. I am sure you will enjoy playing it. It is passionate and as one of my patrons said, “a strong swirling dance of life”


Speaking of patrons; each video release is being supported by patrons through https://www.patreon.com/ilse

If you would like to support me in making more music do have a look. When I make an arrangement you will be the first to receive it, and are encouraged to give suggestions about what pieces you would like arranged. I find this platform a good way for me to interact with fellow cellists who enjoy my music.

Video of Marriage d’Amour, as usual made in front of my famous Narnia cupboard… from inside it, inspiration flows.

Thank you for listening!

Recording Sessions

Another fun recording session for Caroline Fraher's new CD with the lovely and brilliant producer/guitarist Steve Cooney. As well as being a producer and guitarist, he has an amazing method for unlocking and teaching music, which I hope he writes the book for!  Caroline has a lightly sparkling, shimmering voice, and is singing gorgeous songs. This CD is going to be a winner for her, very beautiful.

Recording sessions take alot of concentration on the fine details.

The important things to remember are:

Give every note the right feel and placement. This means keeping relaxed and open to the music, and finding a way for your sound to blend with the other recorded instruments as though you are playing in the same room with them. You have to become part of the band.

Listen to tuning constantly. Especially relative to the track. This can become very difficult playing along with out of tune instruments already recorded, and very easy with a nicely tuned piano. Although if you have been playing alot with other stringed instruments, playing with the equal temperament of the piano can take some getting used to. It can feel like the tuning goes against what the ear naturally wants to hear. Keep tuning your instrument regularly throughout the session and listen for the blend of your notes with the other voices. You are looking for a place for your note that doesn't poke out. Unless poking out is called for…

Keeping the arms, neck and body relaxed whilst playing is essential. It is easy to start letting the tension sneak up after a few hours or even a few minutes of intense concentration. Get up, walk around, have the breaks you need, but mostly, consciously relax your right arm into each bow stroke. Release all the arm muscles just before each new drop in point/entry. You should do this all the time anyway.

Be prepared. If you are not being given a specific part to play, make sure you have the songs sent to you beforehand, and write out at least the structure, but also chords and melody line as well as any ideas you might have. Writing out the bass line of the chords and the melody or lyrics on top helps. The more prepared you are the more relaxed.

Don't talk too much while recording. Try not to explain your mistakes. When given ideas, take them on, and try them. Be like a grassy field swaying in the wind!! Nothing worse than arguing and getting stressed about ideas. Be gentle… you know the rave. Big egos are not needed when you are hired to do the job!!!

And enjoy it!





‘Child of Tree’ John Cage

Four hours of John Cage in the Triskel Arts centre in Cork last night with the Quiet Music Ensemble. Some incredible moments of freedom, beauty, peace, synchronicity, mirth (that was after in the pub) and incredible concentration from all 'sound artists' involved! I played Inlets with Sean McErlaine of QME and Mel Mercier who had performed this piece with John Cage! We had 4 conch shells each, of varying sizes. Water is swirled around inside and amplified, to create excellent glooping sounds. The music also includes pine cones on fire and a conch used as a horn. 32 minutes of glooping. Plus a short 15 minute version at the start of the performance while kids were around. Phew…

“If something is boring after two minutes, try it for four. If still boring, then eight. Then sixteen. Then thirty-two. Eventually one discovers that it is not boring at all.” 

― John Cage


Also on the programme we played Four6, But what about the noise of crumpling paper and Ryanji, where I played the percussion part using the body of the cello and striking of the spike in unison, amplified to create an exciting yet funereal slow beat.

RTE Lyric F'M's Presenter Bernard Clarke and producer Eoin Brady were there to record the event, and Bernard did a stunning and pure reading of Cage's Themes and Variations, whilst various other Cage pieces were played around the venue, including Inlets, One10 violin solo from the balcony (lesya Iglody) Chaconne (Keith Pasco), harps, electronica of the Quiet Club and more… 

To be broadcast on Lyric fm Nova tonight

Ozmosis Concert

OZmoSiS is a new ensemble that I formed with two other expat Australians living in Ireland.
We performed at the Cork School of Music and during the concert I played the premiere of an original work Blow by Blow

An Australian blow fly trapped in the window, the buzz, the irritation, the reminder of what is beyond the window
a reminder of what it is to be free, feelings of being being trapped, so near yet so far.
Working towards your goals blow by blow, a journey where there are all the elements of being a blowfly trapped, released
coming up against the invisible wall time and time again but still persevering,
still heading towards the light, the promise of freedom.

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