Sam Anning: “Excellence is being successful whilst being yourself”

“I think the best kind of award is the one you can’t give. It’s the one that you get from being intimate with music. The award comes when you listen and the hair on the back of your neck stands up, your skin shivers with ecstasy, you cry because there can’t be anything more beautiful than this right now. Anyone who can hear is capable of winning that award, all they have to do is listen.”

Claire Cross on the ‘Surface’ project: “Let’s call it a drama”

“We definitely have a sound that draws from heavy rock music and certain aspects from ambient music too. A lot of the pieces on the album have their own characteristic and mood about them; some are definitely more folk sounding, whilst others can be very raw and aggressive, and then others have a sort of ‘chamber ensemble’ sound about them. It’s not a straight-ahead jazz group by any means.”

Rae Howell: “The experience of listening to instrumental music is your own journey”

“There’s a lot of freedom working alone, and although the same can be said for working with others, the amount of freedom hinges on whether it’s improvised alone or with a group, or if the goal is for it to be through-composed or not, and if that composition is written by myself or collaboratively”