A local of Wuxi, Singapore and London, Erchao Gu is a composer, cultural bridge builder and music educator. Her music has been heard at Barbican Centre’s ‘Beethoven Weekender’, ‘Sounds Like THIS’ festival in Leeds, The Place Theatre, London and in association with Illuminated River, for which she created an orchestral score to celebrate the completion of lighting artwork for Blackfriars Bridge. A keen collaborator, she is now developing her first chamber opera Rotten Kid with writer Clare Best, re-imagining a comic folk tale from the Chinese shadow puppetry canon for a contemporary, English-speaking audience.

Erchao was also one of the 2020 Composers-In-Residence at the Centre for Young Musicians Taunton, where she mentored a group of young composers aged between 11 and 14 in their creative activities. Outside music, Erchao’s happiest memory has been assisting in the production team which successfully transferred the immersive show Alice’s Adventures Underground from London to Shanghai.

After graduating from King’s College London with a First Class (Honours) in Music in 2019, Erchao is now completing her Masters in Composition at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama under the supervision of Professor Julian Anderson, with generous support from the China Scholarship Council and the Guildhall School Trust.

The Ivan Juritz Prize was established in 2014 to celebrate the creative explosion of the modernist era and reward art that seeks to ‘make it new’. Postgraduate students throughout Europe either from traditional academic disciplines or from creative courses are invited to submit texts, films, musical compositions, virtual documentation of artwork, excerpts of moving image work and proposals for installation and performance. Entrants are encouraged to play with form to make us think, feel and question.

The prize is a collaboration between the Centre for Modern Literature and Culture at King’s College London and Cove Park, Further information on the Prize and all its recipients is available here.