We have launched many music residencies over the years with our friends at PRS Foundation but this is a first on two counts – our first with PRS Foundation in Russia and the first residency with musicians moving in both directions.

As part of the UK-Russia Year of Music, composer Stephanie Singer, electronic producer Vessel (Sebastian Gainsborough) and sound artist Kathy Hinde travelled from the UK to Russia; producer Aneliya Avtandilova, composer Igor Yakovenko and electronic producer Mikhail Pinyaev (Aeger Smoothie) travelled from Russia to the UK.

Each musician spent four weeks in their new home, giving them a unique opportunity to work with different musicians, absorbing the local culture, developing their professional networks, exchanging ideas and reaching new audiences. Activity also engaged artists, teachers, students and the wider local communities, aiming to raise awareness of UK and Russian creativity and a sense of co-ownership of new work created during the residency.

The UK musicians’ residencies in Russia have been developed in partnership with the RUSH initiative and organised in partnership with NCCA (National Centre for Contemporary Arts).

The Russian musicians’ residencies in the UK were hosted and supported by Metal (Liverpool), Cryptic (Glasgow) and Snape Maltings (Aldeburgh).


  • Composer Stephanie Singer will travel to Ekaterinburg (29 January - 26 February 2020)
  • Electronic producer Vessel (Sebastian Gainsborough) will travel to Nizhny Novgorod (13 January – 7 February 2020)
  • Sound artist Kathy Hinde will travel to Kaliningrad (13 January – 9 February 2020)


  • Producer and singer Aneliya Avtandilova will travel to Metal in Liverpool (14 October – 13 November 2019)
  • Composer Igor Yakovenko will travel to Snape Maltings in Aldeburgh and Suffolk coast (3 February – 29 February 2020)
  • Electronic producer Mikhail Pinyaev will travel to Cryptic in Glasgow and Argyll & Bute (24 February – 21 March 2020)

 Find out more about the musicians below.

Vessel (Sebastian Gainsborough) /UK/

Acclaimed electronic producer and composer Sebastian Gainsborough started his career as a purveyor of left-field, bass driven electronica, using his unique sonic palate to create immersive, electronic compositions, exploring texture and tone, the organic and the man-made.

Punish, Honey (2014) signalled a distinct departure from everything Vessel had previously released, stepping aside from digital music tools in favour of analogue hardware and unique, hand-crafted instrumentation in order to develop a unique sonic palette. Lead single, ‘Red Sex’ picked up cult status – it was used in Park Chan Wook’s The Handmaiden, was heard on Alexander McQueen’s catwalks, as the soundtrack to a swathe of contemporary dance works and on basement dancefloors around the world.

Following Punish, Honey Gainsborough’s focus shifted to a collaborative, exploratory approach, blurring the boundaries between live and synthesised sound. Gainsborough teamed up with Erased Tapes’ Immix Ensemble for his first foray into the ‘classical’ world – this resulted in a new commission for the re-launch of Tate Britain Transition, released on Erased Tapes in 2016.

This sparked a critical mass of new ideas and partnerships that would change Gainsborough’s music output forever. Gainsborough formed a close bond with Rakhi Singh, Immix’s violinist who opened his eyes to a lifetime of new listening. They began to write their first collaborative work not long after meeting. ‘In Fire’, a response to Janáček’s string quartet ‘Intimate Letters’ dropped in 2019, kicking off a rapid fire triptych alongside chamber opera ‘Paradise Lost’ and ‘Passion’, alongside acclaimed cellist, and fellow Musician in Residence, Lucy Railton. If ‘Transition’ was Gainsborough dipping his toe into the water of the instrumental world, this was him diving in head first.

All the while, alongside this exploration, collaboration and creative play, Gainsborough was simultaneously penning Queen of Golden Dogs, an album that would be his first true, cohesive amalgamation of his deep, nuanced electronic music and the new world of experimental and classical music that was unfolding before his eyes. Marrying ‘orchestral string stabs with propulsive percussion for a sound that is equal parts Arnold Schoenberg and Oneohtrix Point Never.’ Queen of Golden Dogs, was released (again by Tri Angle) in 2018.  It marks a stark departure from the producer’s previous work, taking that next step on Gainsborough’s creative journey, combining chamber-rave freak outs with vocal segues and neo-classical pieces.

I couldn't be more humbled to have been offered this rare and beautiful opportunity by British Council and the PRS Foundation to explore the musical and cultural identities of Nizhny Novgorod. I am deeply curious to immerse myself in a region which has shaped, and been shaped by, the rich musical and cultural identities of the Slavic diaspora, as well as the many non-Slavic ethinic groups that have lived within the borders of Russia. I am truly excited to further explore how the history of these diverse and frequently migratory peoples relates to and intersects with that of Nizhny Novgorod, and Russia in general. (Vessel - Sebastian Gainsborough)

Kathy Hinde /UK/

Kathy Hinde’s work grows from a partnership between nature and technology expressed through audio-visual installations and performances that combine sound, sculpture, image and light. Drawing on inspiration from behaviours and phenomena found in the natural world, she creates work that is generative; that evolves; that can be different each time it is experienced.

Hinde's work represents a cross between kinetic sound sculptures and newly invented musical instruments. Composed of broken instruments, hacked electronics and a blend of digital and analog systems, they can be played live in countless ways. Hinde creates a sensitive balance between the audio and the visual elements to create truly interdisciplinary works.

Hinde has shown work across Europe, China, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, USA, Canada, Colombia, Brazil, Mexico, Australia and New Zealand. Awards include an Honorary Mention at Prix Ars Electronica, runner up for PIARS Sonic Arts Award, twice longlisted for Aesthetica Art Prize, an ORAM Award, a British Composer Award, a Scottish Award for New Music and was selected for European SHAPE Platform for innovative music and audiovisual art in 2018. She became a Cryptic Artist in 2015 and is a member of the Bristol Experimental Expanded Film collective (BEEF).

Hinde has collaborated extensively, and partnerships include projects with Maja Ratkje (NO), Andreas Borregaard (DK), Myriam Boucher (CA), Sabine Vogel (DE) and Joanna MacGregor (UK).

I am thrilled to have the opportunity to respond creatively to the unique location of Kaliningrad. Early Russian explorations in instrument invention that integrate audio, visual, and scientific experimentation, and the current lively sound art scene in Kaliningrad both resonate well with my practice. I am looking forward to gaining a deeper understanding of this experimental legacy whilst making the most of the time and opportunity to devise a new way to improvise with invented or adapted instruments, objects and field recordings. I wish to learn from, and contribute to, the Kaliningrad sound art scene by expanding my current practice through working with and alongside Russian sound artists during my residency. (Kathy Hinde)

Aneliya Avtandilova /Russia/

Aneliya Avtandilova (aka Gdeto) is a St.Petersburg State University and Bard College graduate and a former academic ghostwriter, who for the last 15 years has also been making music. Equally inspired by religious medieval art and Pinterest, her work explores the possibilities of rhythm and melody, themes of physicality, nature, pantheism and transcendent experiences. Her graduation composition for a plastic etude “Sparrow Phase” has been compared by her professors to the works of Stravinsky and Shostakovich, while her band Cheekbones (aka Chkbns) has performed at KEXP, SXSW, Canadian Music Week, Reeperbahn Festival and The Great Escape, besides touring around Asia and Europe.

Since 2012 Cheekbones have released three EPs – Eat Sleep Mom Dad, Private Fiction, This Time – and an LP, Autwik, songs from which got their spots in rotation of such radios as KEXP and NPR. In 2016 Aneliya received a grant from Goethe Institut to travel to Donaueschinger Musiktage festival as a young music professional. Her artistic pseudonym Gdeto (from the Russian word где-то meaning "somewhere") comes from 2017, when she solely released an EP “Pillow Book”, named after Sei Shōnagon’s work.

Aneliya also has two published books of fairy tales in Russian, while her English poetry was featured in Poetry Matters and Plum Tree Tavern. In 2019 she was a selected participant of The British Literature Today seminar, supervised by Lavinia Greenlaw, David Keenan, Jay Bernard and Glyn Maxwell. 

I am most grateful [and] determined to do my best. Really looking forward to diving into the project and finding out what sounds will come out of this me-Liverpool combo. (Aneliya Avtandilova)

Igor Yakovenko /Russia/

Igor Yakovenko is a Moscow-based pianist and composer performing jazz as well as classical, avant-garde music. His manner points at a profound classical background, and, as a jazz pianist, he makes the spontaneous material sound like in a program of Johannes Brahms or Modest Mussorgsky.  

Yakovenko studied at the Department of Historical and Contemporary Performing Arts of the Moscow State Conservatory (class of professor Yury Martynov, specialisation - grand piano, harpsichord, hammerklavier) and obtained Associate of Arts and Sciences (A.A.S.) degree in Classical and Jazz music from State Classical Academy named after Maimonides (classes of professors Oleg Musorin and Igor Bril).

It is an honour and a privilege to be invited to participate in this residency. Looking forward to make a significant work and get inspiration for my future projects. (Igor Yakovenko)

Mikhail Pinyaev (Aeger Smoothie) /Russia/

Aeger Smoothie is the creative alias of photographer and musician, Mikhail Pinyaev, from Nizhny Novgorod in the Russian Federation. It’s also the name of an experimental audiovisual project, which he created, exploring the modern possibilities of mobile music production, working with various genres, such as: ambient, IDM, glitch and other techniques which he discovers whilst composing on the go with iOS devices.

Aeger Smoothie provides a way to make experimental electronic music more accessible to others and unite individual musicians to create a more cohesive regional music scene. With 10 releases in his discography, including two long-plays and various collaborations, Aeger Smoothie’s pursuit of unique production combining audio, abstract and macro photos continues to create music which takes the listener on an explorative imaginary journey into modern life.

I’m looking forward to seeing how the remoteness of the environment will affect my creativity, it’s something I was eager to explore for a long time. I’m sure staying at this beautiful place will lead me to create something fresh and unique, as it is so different from my urban landscape at home. I’m looking forward to meeting artists from all over the world and sharing experiences and techniques. At Cove Park I'm planning on working on a few small projects, including environment-centric ambient compositions and producing a sample library based on natural sounds, which I can share later with ambient and experimental artists. (Mikhail Pinyaev)

Stephanie Singer /UK/

Stephanie Singer is a director/composer creating immersive music and musical theatre. Her work is playful, intimate and whimsical; and a large part of her focus is to create meaningful experiences that foster human connection, a sense of freedom and empathy.

In 2015 Stephanie created BitterSuite to transform the way audiences experience live music, their concerts combine sound, taste, touch, smell and movement to create disarming and intimate experiences. “The work most often involves blindfolding the audience and pairing them with a BitterSuite guide who leads them through a highly choreographed sensory experience involving taste, touch, smell and movement. Each sense stimulated to deepen the way audiences listen. Our work has featured at Royal Opera House, The Science Gallery, Midlands Art Centre, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Rich Mix, Roundhouse, Nesta, Bristol Arnolfini, TedX Hackney, Wilderness Festival and more”.

As a musical theatre composer, Stephanie is a member of the advanced BMI musical theatre workshop in New York. Together with her writing partner Laurel Haines she received the Jerry Harrington Award for creativity, and their work has been selected for masterclasses with Disney's Alan Menken (Hercules), Glenn Slater (Little Mermaid) and Kristen Lopez (Frozen). Stephanie has created music for installations including 'Still' Dulwich Picture Gallery and an immersive ballet for With You Films and the New York City Ballet. She is currently developing a musical animation 'FLASH' and two original stage musicals which have had staged readings at The Tank (New York), MTN’s Beam showcase at Theatre Stratford and The Other Palace.

She is a passionate educator and facilitator for RCA, Brown University, CSM, Bristol University, Concordia University, Sense UK, Museum of London and more. She is the artistic director for the world's first sensory festival 'Open Senses', guest artistic director for a sensory festival co-created by 60 deafblind artists 'Sensibility Festival' and a creative associate for other companies including Punchdrunk, Heart n Soul and more.