Yyan and Emily
Unplugged mediatative music and improvisations
Five Things to Say
Violin and pedal improvisation
Cave art collaboration
Composed collaboratively with Yyan Ng
Stripped-back and solo, emily cloud explores the extremities of violin and viola playing. Written in the depths of caves, in blackened forests and on mountain summits, her music evokes landscapes, imagined and real. A haunting and emotive deep listening experience.
'emily cloud' is the alias of Emily Sheppard, a Tasmanian violinist/violist, improviser and composer. Trained in classical music at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne (2012/13), Emily is now a casual member of the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and Van Diemen’s Band. Since moving to Tasmania in 2014 she devoted her time to exploring diverse musical traditions. She writes music influenced by her forays into folk, gypsy jazz, minimalist, Indian and Japanese music. She is drawn to unconventional and resonant spaces for writing and performing these works, creating site-specific compositions inspired by place. Emily spent four weeks in residency in Tasmanian caves in 2017, supported by Arts Tasmania funding. Throughout this period she composed several new works for solo viola/violin, incorporating extended techniques such as alternative tunings, prepared violin and singing while playing. She has performed in Hastings Cave, Marakoopa Cave and Mt Wellington/kunanyi observation shelter, supported by Arts Tasmania and Hobart City Council grants. She performed at the Tunnel Number Five festival in Darwin, curated by Anne Norman, inside 75-metre long oil storage tunnels.
Emily has played at festivals all over Australia, including Mona Foma, Dark Mofo, Ten Days on the Island, Darwin Festival, Brisbane Festival, Melbourne Festival, Canberra International Music Festival, Cygnet Folk Festival, Fractangular and A Festival Called Panama. She’s been part of performance and recording projects with Paul Kelly, Katie Noonan, DJ Spooky, Michael Kieran Harvey, Dylan Sheridan and the Australian Chamber Orchestra.
Emily has a bachelors degree in environmental science from the University of Tasmania, and her compositions and collaborations are increasingly inspired by her studies. She recorded an album ‘Portrait of Bob Brown’ with Michael Kieran Harvey, featuring her composition ‘Aftermath’, which is inspired by being in the Tarkine/takayna following the 2016 bushfires. She has also performed with a dance/music ensemble ‘Nelipot’, exploring the disappearance of the kelp forests down the East Coast of Tasmania through improvised dance and music.