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Jenny Jackson is a composer based in Sheffield.


She is strongly influenced by a long-term interest in the visual and dramatic arts and often writes pieces which incorporate elements of theatricality or challenge audience perception and expectations in what they see/hear. She has collaborated to produce multidisciplinary projects with visual artists, sculptors, writers and choreographers and is keen to discuss proposals for commissions and collaborations. Recent collaborators include: artist Keith Hayman, sculptor Gillian Brent, writer Marcy Kahan, and choreographers Sue Lewis and Hannah Wadsworth. Her work has been performed by Elysian Quartet, Nieuw Ensemble, Platform 4, Philip Thomas, Opera on Location and Ensemble 360. 


Jenny studied music at Bath College of Higher Education (Newton Park campus) before completing a P.G.C.E in secondary school music teaching at Bretton Hall in 1993. Following this, she divided her time between composing and teaching. In 1996 Jenny won the 'Songs from the Underground' composition competition with Light, which was performed by Roderick Williams and David Wickham at the Wigmore Hall. She taught secondary classroom music at various schools in Sheffield as well as providing music and art workshops for G.C.S.E and A’level students in Sheffield and Doncaster with ‘Fusion’ (a partnership with artist Brian Jackson funded by an Arts for Everyone Express Arts Council award). During this time, Jenny was also a tutor at the Division of Continuing Adult Education, University of Sheffield from 1995 - 1998 where she devised and delivered two courses: ‘From Prokofiev to Pulp’ and ‘Sounding out the Twentieth Century’. From 1998 - 2003 Jenny established a successful music workshop for the WEA (Worker’s Education Association) in Chesterfield. 


In 2001 Jenny won a fee scholarship at the University of Sheffield and successfully completed a PhD in composition with Professor George Nicholson in 2009, following an exploration into the relationship between notational possibilities and resulting performance outcomes. In 2003 Frisk was shortlisted by the spnm (Society for the Promotion of New Music, now Sound and Music) which enabled her to participate in two spnm professional development schemes: C4K (Composing for Kids) 2003 - 2005, and Sound Inventors 2005. In 2004 Melodrama was shortlisted by CoMA (Contemporary Music for All) and, as a result, she received tuition with Diana Burrell. In 2006 Hot Flush was selected for workshop & performance by the Elysian Quartet, for the York University string quartet composition competition. 


In 2009 Jenny was selected to participate on the HCMF (Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival) & Nieuw Ensemble Yorkshire Composers’ professional development scheme. Her piece Self Portrait was performed by the Nieuw Ensemble at HCMF and was selected for a further performance at the Musiekgebouw aan’t IJ in Amsterdam, and was also broadcast live on Dutch national radio. In 2007 she was selected to participate on the Jerwood Opera Writing Programme, based at the Britten Pears School, Aldeburgh where she collaborated with Marcy Kahan to produce a comic opera Mimi on ze Bridge. Whilst there she received tuition from Sir Harrison Birtwistle and Giorgio Battistelli. 


Jenny is a member of Platform 4 - a composer collective based in Sheffield. She currently teaches piano, composition and theory at her home in Sheffield (one-to-one and in small groups), and provides support and supervision for 3rd year music students from the University of Sheffield.

"Following a performance of Haydn’s ‘String Quartet Op.33 No.1’ rendered with a beauty enhanced by perfect clarity, Ensemble 360 gave a vibrant rendition of Jenny Jackson’s ‘Pull Focus [sic]’. Very loosely based on a tone row from the Haydn ‘Russian’ quartet we’d just heard, this was an energetically ace new commission and a reminder of Ensemble 360’s abilities and enthusiasm in performing new music."

Samantha Holland, Now Then magazine
http://nowthenmagazine.com/sheffield/issue-111/live/