After a national call for visual artists and music creators, MusicFest Aberystwyth are excited to announce Claire Victoria Roberts and Sally MacLachlan as the two selected creatives for their 2021 Digital Installation.

This is a specially-commissioned collaboration in which two creatives, either based in or from Wales, will have the opportunity to collaborate with one another and create a digital installation inspired by the rich landscape and culture of Aberystwyth, and premiered as part of our International Music Festival and Summer School in summer 2021.

Claire and Sally will collaborate with one another to create a digital installation responding to a theme of their choosing inspired by the rich landscape and culture of Aberystwyth (the sea, land, and ecology of the area, the beautiful Ceredigion coastline, to Cantre’r Gwaelod, for example). 

After a national call for creatives, the selection panel of industry experts were excited to see a broad range of high quality, inventive, and forward thinking visual art and music. The Festival are excited that this will be the first in many opportunities to support and platform cross-arts collaboration, and look forward to working with partners and supporters in the future to bring even more opportunities to you.

What is this collaboration?

The selected creatives will be tasked to create a blended audio-visual installation, and will be overseen by our Associate Artistic Director, composer and music creator, Nathan James Dearden, where he will be on-hand to guide conversations, give advice, and assist the collaboration in any way the creatives see fit.

The digital installation will be premiered as part of our 2021 International Music Festival and Summer School, and will be given several performance opportunities including a live, premiere streaming at Aberystwyth Arts Centre, on our dedicated installation webpage, and as part of our fringe events in the local area through MusicFest XTRA. The broader work of the selected creatives will also be promoted through MusicFest Aberystwyth, as the creatives see fit, plus the production of an ‘In conversation’ digital event where the selected creatives will be able to share their practice and collaboration with audiences.

Meet our creatives

Claire Victoria Roberts

Selected Music Creator, sponsored by the Welsh Music Guild

Described as ‘one of Wales’s leading composers’ by Wales Arts Review, Claire Victoria Roberts‘s music has been performed by national orchestras, jazz improvisers, folk ensembles and opera companies alike. She is the Winner of a Royal Philharmonic Society Composition Prize 2019-2020, as well as 2017 winner of the Mathias Composition prize, and 2019 winner of a Francis Chagrin award. Performing as a violinist and vocalist, Claire‘s work is a varied portfolio of performing and composing across styles and genres. This year she made her Wigmore Hall debut with a commissioned jazz song cycle, was broadcast on Radio 3’s New Music show, and is working on an upcoming album of her own original music exploring chamber, jazz and folk styles.

I feel so lucky to have been selected for this collaboration, to connect with another young artist and hopefully create a unique experience for the festival audience. Composing can be a lonely task, so working in this way, at a lovely festival, and with the sea breeze in Aber, is something I’m very excited about!


Sally MacLachlan

Selected Visual Artist, sponsored by MusicFest Aberystwyth

Sally MacLachlan is profoundly interested in site my work aims to challenge conventional relationships with space, allowing us to connect to what is around us in alternative ways. Distilling and refilling hope, by encountering and reflecting change I continuously consider the impact of our actions and the wider, ripple affect they can create. Ensuring my work is grounded in historical context as well as deep investigation into scientific research and imaginative, accessible ways to represent this. Looking with one eye forward and one eye back I sit comfortably in the present knowing that to engage in the now is how we create catalysts for change. To feel joy in the moment, a timeless abandon. My work circumnavigates this premise, that by deep knowing of a space one can create the care necessary to make positive change. Dancing with hope in the dark, there’s a spark.

Please click here or here to view some of Sally’s previous work. 

I am incredibly excited to have the opportunity to collaborate and create something that inspires and engages beyond what I could imagine alone.