SMFA lecturers Peter Hatton and Paul Gambrill receive ‘Above and Beyond Awards’!

Peter Hatton, 2017.


Congratulations to SMFA lecturers Peter Hatton and Paul Gambrill  Peter Hatton for receiving their Above and Beyond Awards! The Kent Union Awards recognise any member of staff throughout the academic year who has gone above and beyond what is expected of them. The nominations are from students, offering the chance to show staff how much they are appreciated and to celebrate their achievements. As soon as a member of staff is nominated, they will be surprised while they’re working (whether that be teaching, in their office etc.) so that everyone around them can see how amazing they are.

Paul Gambrill, 2017.


For the awards to School of Music and Fine Art staff, Paul Gambrill, Associate Lecturer in Event and Experience Design, was described by nominators as “inspiring”, “motivating” and always willing to put in extra time to ensure students achieve their full potential. “He has been such an asset to the school for over eight years and we all feel he deserves recognition and something back.”

Peter Hatton, Programmes Director, Event and Experience Design, Event and Experience Management, Fine Art and Deputy Head of School was praised for being “a very kind & understanding teacher,” “enthusiastic” and offering continued assistance to ensure student progress and helping with career opportunities. “He has found us so many experiences, paid employment or volunteering work, and is never hesitant with referencing. His guidance has helped me develop my creativity, my knowledge and my practical skills to a great extent throughout my years in Kent, which I am forever grateful for.”

If you want to nominate a member of staff for going above and beyond, go to:

SMFA PhD student Moyra Derby has article published in the Journal of Contemporary Painting

Table Painting, 2017. Image by Moyra Derby


An article by School of Music and Fine Art Graduate Teaching Assistant and PhD student, Moyra Derby, has been published in the Journal of Contemporary Painting. ‘Constraints between picture and painting: Some considerations at a distance’ appears in Volume 2, Issue 2:,id=22696/

A Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a Founding Trustee of Crate Studio & Project Space in Margate, Moyra studied at University of Ulster at Belfast, Cheltenham School of Art and the Royal College of Art. Currently undertaking a practice based PhD in Fine Art with the support of a Vice Chancellors Scholarship, her research focuses on processes of attention as a productive context for contemporary painting.

Moyra also has work included in upcoming show Fully Awake from 6th – 21st April at blip blip blip, East Street Arts Patrick Studios, St. Mary’s Lane Leeds LS9 7EH. The Private View is 5th April 6-8pm, and the show is curated by Ian Hartshorne & Sean Kaye for Teaching Painting.


More info:

Access to history originally hidden from public view as SMFA Fine Art students present Lost in Storage at the Guildhall Museum, Rochester, 1st-5th April


School of Music and Fine Art students celebrate the unseen, the past and future through items usually hidden from public view at the Guildhall Museum, Rochester.

The 2nd year BA (Hons) Fine Art students’ vivid practices include textile work, community collaboration, painting, print, sculpture, wall paper design, installation, soundscape and interactive pieces. This exciting exhibition uncovers truth and tells new stories. New life has been given to archived objects; they are Lost in Storage no more.

Open Sat 1 – Tues 4 April, 10am-5pm and Weds 5th April 10am-3pm. (Closed Monday 3rd April). Free entry – all welcome! Private view: 31st of March 6-8pm.

SMFA’s Foundry Studios releases debut solo album from singer Sarah Dacey featuring new works by British composers


Calliope, the debut solo album from Sarah Dacey (soprano) and Belinda Jones (piano), featuring new works by British composers, will be released on the 26th March by the School of Music and Fine Art’s Foundry Studios.

Says Phil Marsh, Studio Manager, “We are delighted to sign this contract with such acclaimed performers.”

Singer, arranger and composer Sarah Dacey, is best known for being a member of one of the UK’s most groundbreaking groups, Juice Vocal Ensemble. She is Assistant Lecturer in Music Performance and freelance classical singer at SMFA.  Since her studies at York University and the RAM (where she met Belinda), Sarah has worked at the forefront of the contemporary music scene, premiering works at the ROH and Tête à Tête Opera Festival and singing with contemporary music groups such as The Riot Ensemble. This CD is her debut solo album and features songs by some of the UK’s finest composers – Kerry Andrew, Roger Marsh, Bushra El-Turk, Cecilia McDowall, Rob Fokkens, Duncan MacLeod and Geoffrey Hannan.

The subject matter of the songs is eclectic, including a song from a chipmunk who’s upset about having their stash of nuts stolen, poems about fruit, an absurd nursery tale of naughty children being turned into donkeys, a japanese ghost story and the diary entries of a schizophrenia sufferer. This showcase of Sarah and Belinda’s performance partnership is a wonderful example of the breadth of 21st century vocal repertoire available that’s seldom published or recorded.

“A strong, perky soprano…colourful, challenging and witty….There’s a talent there for the irreverent.” – Classical Source

“Gorgeous, soaring voice” – ***** Jerry Springer:The Opera, London Theatre 1

“The irrepressible Juice Vocal Ensemble – an all-female trio of astonishing variety, spark and brilliance – is proof that the sap is still rising in classical music.” – The Guardian

Sarah and Belinda are available for radio performances and interviews. For more information and contact details, please visit


More info about Sarah here:

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SMFA’s Foundry Studios signs recording contract with Ashford based rapper/singer songwriter Fennie Dizzle

Fennie Dizzle, 2017


Ashford based rapper/singer songwriter Fennie Dizzle has recently signed a recording contract with SMFA’s Foundry Studios. Says Phil Marsh, Studio Manager, “We are excited to be working with Fennie. Recording will commence at the end of April looking towards an early summer release date.”

Of the project, Fennie says:  “This is a Rap and Alternative R&B project  from my EP Open With Caution (OWC). It’s a live instrumentation version of a select few songs from the EP. With the Band exploring different rhythms and arrangements compared to the software instruments version of the EP.

The Message behind Open With Caution is pretty straight forward. I come from a place where I’ve always had to keep up a certain persona and appearance because of my religious background, family and social surroundings like many people do, so OWC is just me being free to talk about some of the things other people may not have thought I do, feel or see, hence the term ‘Open With Caution’.”


You can follow Fennie via @FendizzleTNC and  and

Shona Illingworth’s work featured in The Lancet Neurology

Time Present, 2016. Image by Shona Illingworth

No past, no future: studies in the art and science of memory is a fascinating article by Jules Morgan in The Lancet Neurology which explores artist and SMFA Fine Art Reader Shona Illingworth’s interdisciplinary research. It is out shortly in print but available to view online here:

Director of Graduate Studies in the School of Music and Fine Art, Shona Illingworth was shortlisted for the prestigious 2016 Jarman Award, and her widely exhibited work across sound, film, video, photography, drawing and painting combines interdisciplinary research (particularly with emerging neuropsychological models of memory and critical approaches to memory studies) with publicly engaged practice.


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Adam Chodzko speaks at the British Academy and exhibits in Hull

Adam Chodzko, 2017. Photo by Clay Barnard Chodzko


On March 13th, SMFA Senior Lecturer in Fine Art and acclaimed award-wining contemporary visual artist, Adam Chodzko, joins Cornelia Parker OBE, RA and Bob and Roberta Smith, RA for a panel discussion of former British School at Rome artist award-holders as they reflect on the impact of their time in Rome on their subsequent careers. Chaired by celebrated art historian, writer and curator Dawn Ades, the event Inspiring visual art: a view from Rome takes place from 6.00pm-7.30pm in London – more info here

From April 1st, Adam Chodzko also has work in group exhibition Offshore: Artists Explore the Sea at Ferens Art Gallery and Hull Maritime Museum, until 28th August and Sounding the Sea Symposium 15 – 16 June. This major new exhibition, part of Hull UK City of Culture 2017, is curated by Invisible Dust and will include new and existing works by internationally-renowned artists. It examines people’s relationship to the oceans as a source of food and energy, a dumping ground for waste and the reference point for many of our most haunting and significant myths.  Through a range of media these artists pose questions about our connection to and use of the sea. Invisible Dust has developed relationships between some of the artists with marine biologists and ecologists from OxfordSouthampton and Hull Universities. Being informed and influenced by the science is providing new stimulus to the artists’ ideas.  More info at

Exhibiting internationally since 1991, Adam Chodzko works across media, from video installation to subtle interventions, with a practice that is situated both within the gallery and the wider public realm.

New work from SMFA Music Technology student to be premiered in Kent

Jeriah Nadesan, MA student in Music Technology, 2017.


On 13 May at 7.30pm, the City of Rochester Symphony Orchestra (CRSO) premieres a new work by SMFA MA Music Technology student Jeriah Nadesan. The programme, conducted by director Peter Bassano also includes music by Brahms, Rodrigo, and Saint-Saens and takes place at The Central Theatre Chatham.

Says Jeriah, “My piece is called Glorious Streams and I have aimed to convey this in the flowing rhythms and rich harmonies the orchestra plays. When writing this piece I attempted to be less strict in keeping my composition traditionally classical, but allowed for the nuances of my musical influences such as Jazz, Gospel and Pop. I have also added some live electronics to this piece, using different types of synths, to accentuate the music the orchestra plays.”

Jeriah was born in South Africa, his family moving to England when he was 6 years old.  Comments the composer, who also achieved his BSc in Music Technology in the School of Music and Fine Art, “I grew up in a home that was always filled with all types of music as both my parents are singers and accomplished musicians.  I developed an interest in classical music as a result of studying classical piano. After completing my studies, I hope to pursue a career in Music Arrangement, Film Composition and Music Production.”

SMFA’s partnership with the CRSO has already resulted in 5 world premieres of music by student composers from the School of Music and Fine Art.

Formed in 1969, the CRSO has approximately 60 playing members, both amateur and professional musicians, who perform concerts at The Central Theatre, Chatham, and other venues in Kent. Rehearsals take place at the Pilkington Building, University of Kent at Medway, on Mondays, 7.45-9.45pm.


Tickets for the concert on 13 May are available from

For more details go to