Monday 28 November 2016


David Lyttle, Emmy The Great and Quinta are the next musicians to take part in international residency 

The musicians will reside in different cities in China as part of the residency pro-gramme. Previous participants in the scheme have included Imogen Heap, Matthew Bourne, Mira Calix and Jamie Woon.

The British Council and PRS for Music Foundation have announced that David Lyttle, Emmy the Great and Quinta will be the next three musicians to spend up to six weeks in China as part of the Musicians in Residence programme. The immersive programme will provide the musicians with an opportunity to create original work, explore new international influences and reach. 

For jazz musician David Lyttle (32), from Armagh, the residency comes after a recent trip to Morocco organized by the British Council in conjunction with the Nerve Centre. 

Mira Calix, who took part in the 2015 residency and whose work The Moving Museum 35 was produced during her stay and is now touring the UK, said: ‘My MIRChina15 residency was one of the most exhilarating and exhausting experiences of my life. Exhausting in all the best ways. The Moving Museum 35 set out to challenge the preconceptions of art’s place in our every-day lives. I think it’s fair to say it exceeded the scope of my original ambitions, by creating deep friendships and lifelong ties across any imagined cultural, linguistic or sociopolitical divides. I am so proud to have been involved in a project that in some small way touched the lives of 161 million people! Yes - you read that number right! Moving Museum 35 and all who facilitated and partici-pated in its creation will forever hold a place in my heart. I can’t wait to return to what now feels like my very much extended family and continue this journey. ’

The Musicians in Residence initiative, which began in 2011, will see the UK-based musicians spend time separately in three Chinese cities during spring 2017. While resident there they will collaborate with local artists, write new material and explore new creative and professional opportunities. Whilst any creative output will necessarily be shaped by their experiences in China and the people that they meet and collaborate with, each musician has already submitted plans about what they aim to focus on during their residency. 

The musicians 

The three host cities in 2017 are GUIYANG (Southwest China), SUZHOU (eastern China) and XIAMEN (on China’s southeast coast); which have been chosen as major Chinese cities whose international links are not yet as strong as other urban centres in the country.  


  • •MOBO-nominated Irish musician DAVID LYTTLE has been described by Rolling Stone magazine as "one of the best, robust listening experiences you're likely to have all year". Lyttle’s musical personas shift between jazz drummer, recording artist, composer/songwriter and producer. His collaborations have ranged from jazz icon Joe Lovano to hip hop visionary Talib Kweli; to Irish music star Duke Special. With nominations in the MOBO and Urban Music Awards, Lyttle has recently toured in the UK, Canada and Europe. He will travel to Suzhou.
  • •Hong Kong-born EMMY THE GREAT was has released three, critically-acclaimed studio albums since 2009. In 2014, she released the soundtrack to the Sony Pictures film Austen-land, and was longlisted for the Academy Award for Best Original Song. She also contrib-utes original music to the podcast Mystery Show, the number 1 podcast on iTunes US in 2015, which has been featured on Conan, the Simpsons, Brooklyn Ninenine and more. Moss writes about culture for the Guardian and is a regular contributor to publications such as Noisey and i-D.
  • QUINTA is a multi-instrumentalist, performer, improviser and composer, who will spend time in Guiyang. She has collaborated with a range of artists, including Bat for Lashes and Patrick Wolf and Radiohead’s Philip Selway; and is one quarter of all-female experimental collective Collectress. Classically trained rather than classically moulded, Quinta meets free play and experimentation with musical substance in her work and brings a mischievious theatricality to her performances. 


The Musicians in Residence - China programme was launched in September 2011, with Gareth Bonello, Imogen Heap, Jamie Woon and Matthew Bourne relocating in 2011 and early 2012. The 2014 residencies saw Oliver Coates, Sam Genders, Arun Ghosh, Anna Meredith and Sid Peacock travel to China; and from January to March 2016 Mira Calix, Kerry Andrew and Bella Hardy took part. 

The residencies have resulted in a diverse range of outputs. Imogen Heap included the track XiZi She Knows, composed during her time in Hangzhou, on her 2014 album Sparks. In 2013 Gareth Bonello released the album Y Bardd Anfarwol, combining Welsh and Chinese folk music to tell the life story of the Tang Dynasty poet Li Bai, which won Welsh Album of the Year at the 2014 National Eisteddfod, and was nominated for the 2014 Welsh Music Prize. The track “Little Wonder”, on Ja-mie Woon’s Mercury nominated album Making Time (2016), was inspired by his time in China on the residency.



Notes to Editor

Further information about the Musicians in Residence - China programme can be found at: or      

Follow @BritishMusic_ or @PRSFoundation for updates. 


For more information on PRS for Music Foundation, please contact:

Liam McMahon, Communications Manager // 020 3741 4741


For more information on the British Council, please contact :

Mary Doherty, Senior Press Officer // 020 7389 3144


About PRS for Music Foundation

PRS for Music Foundation is the UK's leading charitable funder of new music and talent development across all genres. Since 2000 PRS for Music Foundation has given more than £20 million to over 5,000 new music initiatives by awarding grants and leading partnership programmes that support music sector development. Widely respected as an adventurous and proactive funding body, PRS for Music Foundation supports an exceptional range of new music activity – from composer residencies and commissions to festivals and showcases in the UK and overseas.


About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide. We work in over 100 countries in the arts, education and English and in 2010/11 we en-gaged face to face with 30 million people and reached 578 million. We have 6,800 staff worldwide. Our total turnover in 2010/11 was £693 million, of which our grant-in-aid from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office was £190 million. The remainder was generated through trading activities such as English language teaching. For every £1 of taxpayer money invested we earn £2.65 in additional income.