Nick Parkin is an award-winning Composer, Musician, Artist, Director and Movement Practitioner. He is a specialist in environmental and site-based sound and performance. Since 2001 he has taught Environmental and Site Specific Performance and Butoh to BA1 & MA students.
Nick trained in Fine Arts and Community Arts at Bradford Art College 1980 – 83 specializing in procession, masked performance and fire sculpture. He then later gained an MA in Electro-acoustic music composition at University of East Anglia 1998-1999.
His live performances reflected his specialist training in dance, theatre and martial arts and since 1982 his studies include:
- Contact Improvisation Dance with Bonnie Meekums and Mary Prestige /of the London X6 Improvisers Collective.
- Butoh Dance initially training in Sankai Juku technique with Anne Carrie of Dominic Petit Company in Paris. Then further training with Mitsutaka Ishii, Eiko and Koma, and Netta Plotsky.
- Noh Theatre training with Akira Matsue and Yoshi Oida.
- Training in Iyengar Yoga, Ki Aikido, Wushu Kung Fu, and Zazen Sitting meditation.
- From 1993 – 20011 Senior student with Lam Kam Chuen in Zhan Zhuang Chi Kung and member of Master Lam’s ‘Da Cheung Chuan Zhan Zhuang’ Chi Kung Research Group UK.
- 1999 – 20011 Pakua Chang with Dr Xie Peiqi and ongoing training in the method of Park Bok Nam.
Since 1984 Nicks main artistic preoccupation has been with landscape, body states, ritual, mythological and elemental themes creating performance, costume, mask, installations, painting, assemblages, photography, film, video and sound/music compositions in England, Wales, Ireland, Spain, Switzerland, Italy, and Germany. From 1982-1994 Nick was active as a dancer/performer creating work derived from landscape with particular relation to stone. This work made in collaboration with dancer Katharina Vogel was created via residencies all over Europe including Britain, Switzerland, Italy, Germany and Spain. Their work culminated in a number of duet productions such as Field and Stone Trilogy In addition an extensive tour of a multi-disciplinary production Ancient Resonances with Public Dreamers funded by South East Arts, Southern Arts and Kent County Council toured to numerous locations all over South of England. Nick worked as a performer for Paupers Carnival Theatre and Welfare State and presented his own productions in venues including The South Bank Centre, major venues in Wales, Portland Quarry Sculpture Trust, Ex-It European Butoh Symposium in Schloss Bröllin East Germany. His last solo production was Stone Trilogy performed as part of East Winds Butoh Festival Chisenhale Dance Space London, 1994. ‘Alchemy of Landscape’ an ongoing Landscape and Site Research Project with MG Rotie based around an ancient Copper Mining Site in North Wales involving Performance, Sound, Photography & Film 2019. Creating and Directing a number of Immersive and Ritualistic Performance events with Butoh Dancers and Live Sound, Ethers 2017, Sun Cult 18,19.
In 2001 Nick won first prize in the prestigious Bourges Electro-acoustic music awards for the composition ‘Magmas’ which was broadcast on Radio stations worldwide. In 2002 Magma’s led to a film commission from Sonic Arts Network which was screened at QEH Royal Festival Hall as part of London Sinfonietta’s State of the Nation Festival.
He has over 10 releases on CD, which have evolved from his ongoing interest in elemental sound, environmental and microsounds and the meeting points of industrial, architectural and natural sound worlds. His recent albums, Hemisphere 2015, Ethers 2017, Ziggurats 2018, and Sun Cult 2019, are available on all major streaming services.
Since the 1980s Nick has received commissions from numerous high profile dance and theatre companies including:
- Over 30 commissions for Marie-Gabrielle Rotie Productions.
- Horse and Bamboo, Doo Cot, Athletes of the Heart, Liz Lea Dance, Ko Murobushi, Tetsuru Fukuhara, Atsushi Takenuchi, London College of Fashion, Athina Vahla and Candoco, Stefan Marb Munich Germany, Plesni Theatre Ljubljana Slovenia, Athletes of the Heart & Mladinsco Theatre Company Ljubljana Slovenia, Tanja Raman Cardiff Wales, Hampshire Sculpture Trust. Dance Nomad Andile Sotiya, The Place London.
In 2007 he was Musical Director, and Composer for Spaces Between a large scale Site-Specific Music and Dance Performance for the re-opening of the Royal Festival Hall South Bank London with Artistic Director Athina Valah, Candoco Dance, New Vic and the Southbank Centre. He collaborated with students and tutors from Newham Six Form College, Royal Docks Community School, Guildhall School of Music, and Goldsmiths College University of London Music Students.
TV and Radio Engagements include BBC Wales, BBC World Service Persian, BBC radio and Nick’s sound has been commissioned on numerous occasions for BBC Radio 4 Drama. He has held funded creation residencies in Spain, Engadine Alps in Switzerland, Germany, Monaco digital Dance Festival and Arena Theatre Wolverhampton, and Portland Quarry Dorset. Live concerts include in South Bank Centre, October Gallery, festivals in Zurich Switzerland, Italy, Belgium, Womad Festival Reading UK.
Nick has taught environmental, site-specific, Butoh and sound workshops in UK and Internationally including for Trinity Laban, Siobhan Davies Dance Studio London, Schloss Bröllin, East Germany,Performers House in Denmark,Florence Italy,& Palermo Sicily, Bangor University North Wales, Extra-Mural Department, Bristol University, Gloss Coll Gloucester, Commonwealth Institute London, Birmingham City Museum, East 15 acting school, University of Essex and Butoh UK in London and Residential Summer School Butoh & Landscape Retreats in Pembrokeshire South Wales.2014 to 18. Visiting Lecturer at Central St Martins UAL from 2012 to 2018. 4th Monkey Theatre Co. 2012 to 2019.
He has taught schools residency workshops and performances at Thame Oxford, King Alfred’s Winchester, Hayling Island Hampshire, Isle of Sheppy. And Special needs teaching in Faversham and other special needs centres in Kent.
In 2006 he was invited to teach site-specific and environmental performance at the St John Cavalier Centre for Creativity Valletta Malta, exploring various sites including a number of Malta’s Neolithic Temple sites.
Publications and research outputs
Conference or Workshop Item
Rotie, Marie-Gabrielle and Parkin, Nick. 2017. 'Encounters Series'. In: Encounters Series. Pembrokeshire, United Kingdom 2015 to 2018.