Associate Artists Scheme

Our Associate Artists are key to fulfilling our artistic vision. They curate and programme a series of innovative concerts, cultivate ambition and talent by working with our students, and support our work in the community.

John Ball

John Ball is a dedicated performer and teacher of North Indian music specialising in both tabla and the one hundred stringed santoor. John studied Santoor with Sri Harjinder Pal Singh, a senior disciple of Pandit Shivkumar Sharma, and has received extensive training from some of India’s greatest tabla maestros including Sri Sudhir Saxena, Ustad Faiyaz Khan and Pandit Yogesh Samsi. In recent years he has worked as a composer and performer in several successful collaborative projects, including Indus, Rafiki Jazz and Unfurl, and has a passion for fusing Indian music with other world music traditions, performing at Womad, Edinburgh Festival, Musicport, Brecon Jazz Festival and the London Jazz Festival.

Previous Associate Artists
Ligeti Quartet (2015-2020)

Tuesday 27 October 2015 marked the date of our first concert with the Ligeti Quartet. The quartet went on to perform during each season and also worked with schools and colleges on educational projects. Over the course of their time with us the Quartet presented works by Steve Reich, Bartók, Berg and more recently the Quartet’s Sense & Restriction concert in 2018 featured the premiere of Kerry Andrew’s tInNiTuS sOnGs with pieces in that particular concert being performed in darkness.

Within their range of educational projects the Quartet worked with young composers and music students from Greenhead College in Huddersfield during our Spring season in 2019. The students taking part in the workshop had the opportunity to devise new classical works, with one participant’s piece being chosen by the Ligeti Quartet to be performed during their concert with us.

Simon Jacobs, Head of Music at Greenhead College, said “We can’t thank the Ligeti Quartet enough for the workshop, their good humoured and relaxed approach, combined with truly inspiring performance, captivated our students in a way that we rarely see.” He added, “For our students to have the opportunity to hear their compositions come to life and be performed by such a fine ensemble was an incredible opportunity.”

The team at University of Sheffield Concerts extend our huge thanks to the Ligeti Quartet for being our Associate Artists, for the wonderful music and concert experiences they have presented for our audiences and for their generosity across all the educational projects they have worked on.

Our audiences loved the Ligeti’s and the following is just a small selection of the feedback we have received about Ligeti Quartet performances over the past five years.

Outstanding concert – please bring this quartet back again.

Fantastic Ligeti Quartet and Kerry – REAL music.

Mind-blowing music from the Ligeti Quartet. Amazing!

They are amazing. Really good atmosphere.

Music to take you to unfamiliar places and challenge your preconceptions. 

The Kerry Andrew piece was very intriguing! A lovely experience!

Lovely, peaceful, moving, thought-provoking.

I LOVE the experimental nature of these pieces, I think it’s important to have them. The dark piece was amazing – more pieces should be played in the dark.

Fascinating! Lovely blending of ambient sound.

Kerry’s piece was really moving and thought-provoking.

Fantastic exploration of the far edges of ‘normal’ music – widening horizons and testing the boundaries of conventional music. Really well presented too!

Thank you for a very special and unique experience. The Ligeti Quartet are incredible, and play as if they are one virtuosic voice at times. Their playing is breathtaking.

The piece in the dark was a tremendous experience… 

Always enjoy hearing/seeing the Ligetis. They always put together an interesting programme of music. Long may it continue!

Fabulous programme, great series on senses – fantastic idea.

And some feedback specifically on the educational projects the Ligeti Quartet ran in association with University of Sheffield Concerts…

It’s always a delight to welcome the Ligeti Quartet here. They’re so enthusiastic and thoughtful in their sessions and give lots of good advice to our composers. It’s invaluable to the students to be given the opportunity to have sustained contact with professional players of this standard, and to have their work treated with lots of respect and constructive criticism. Critical friends indeed!

The Ligeti Quartet workshop was absolutely invaluable to the development of my string quartet, which I am using in my final portfolio for Extended Composition. Could not get this feedback and detailed development from anywhere else.

This workshop has been a great opportunity for me to hear my work being played and critiqued. It’s rare that the chamber music we write gets played by such good musicians for us in a personal way.

The workshops are incredibly invaluable to my degree as they provide a level of playing and professionalism that wouldn’t be available otherwise.

About the Ligeti Quartet

Find out more about the Quartet and upcoming concerts on the official Ligeti Quartet website.