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Jim Franklin : Represented Artist

Random Audio Sample: Silkworms : chamber ensemble by Jim Franklin, from the CD Nine elemental songs

Photo of Jim Franklin

Artist website: http://www.bambusherz.de

Jim Franklin (b.1959), trained in European classical music with a BMus (Hons) degree ( Sydney University), studying with Peter Sculthorpe. His piano concerto, Across the Swan's Riding, won the concerto section of the 1981 ABC Young Composers' Orchestral Award. During postgraduate study in Germany (Milko Kelemen) and Holland (Ton de Leeuw), he worked with electronics. In Australia in 1986, he met Shakuhachi Grand Master Riley Lee. In 1988 Lee and Franklin recorded an album together, the beginning of various collaborations; Franklin commenced learning shakuhachi, as student of Lee. After studies in Japan and an Asialink scholarship as composer in the Studio for Computer Music at Kunitachi College in Tokyo, Franklin received in 1996 the title Shihan (shakuhachi master) from YOKOYAMA Katsuya. In July 1998 Franklin was an invited performer and composer for shakuhachi and electroacoustic media at the World Shakuhachi Festival in Boulder, U.S.A.

From 1998-2000 Franklin travelled to Europe on concert tour. During 2001-2004 he was an invited teacher and performer at the Australian and International Shakuhachi Festivals. While from 2001-2003 he divided his time between Europe and Australia. Since 2004 he resides near Nuremberg ( Germany).

In 2006 Franklin became the first chairperson of the European Shakuhachi Society and was a primary organiser and teacher at the inaugural European Shakuhachi Summer Schools in 2006 (London) and 2007 (Colmar/Munster).

Franklin has also engaged intensively with the Zen-Buddhist background of the shakuhachi, studying with Robert Aitken, Rōshi, (Diamond Sangha, affiliated with the Sanbo Kyodan Zen order).

Franklin is now engaged as composer and shakuhachi performer. Many of his works have been released on CD, on the Celestial Harmonies label (www.harmonies.com). In 1997 he completed his PhD in Composition at Sydney University (awarded 1998). His dissertation contained original works and discussions focusing on shakuhachi in combination with other instruments including electronics.

Franklin is also active as a thereminist, exploring the link between the corporeality of theremin performance and the physicality of the shakuhachi.

Education and teaching are central to Franklin's activities. During 1994-2003 he was Senior Lecturer in Music Technology at the University of Western Sydney, 1998-1999 heading the Music Department there. Since 1993 he has taught shakuhachi privately.

Franklin perceives his calling in the overlap of several areas: education/performance, propagating the shakuhachi tradition; performance/composition, extending and developing that tradition through encounters with other instruments and forms; and in all his activities, raising awareness of the deep spirituality which underlies the instrument and its music.

Biography provided by the composer — current to August 2007

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Digital sheet music sample Flightlines: Six landscapes (sextets: electronics, keyboard, percussion, woodwind) (1992) Commissioned by Southern Crossings