Trumpeter Tine Thing Helseth and her all-female brass ensemble tenThing present She Composes Like a Man, available on Lawo Classics from the 05 April 2024. Featuring the music of 13 female composers, the album’s title takes its inspiration from an outdated ‘reverent’ quote that described Ethel Smyth’s music.

Founded 17 years ago by Tine Thing Helseth and nine friends, tenThing is an all-female brass ensemble with a message: brass is for everyone, regardless of your gender. The album She Composes Like a Man features music of women composers. Its title derives from a critic describing composer Ethel Smyth. He offered the best praise he could by stating that “she composes like a man”. Tine: “It’s both wonderfully provocative and something to bring a wry smile to the face. Luckily, the world has moved on a bit since those days.”

A nod to the past and inspiration for the future, this album comprises of works (and arrangements for the ensemble) by Grażyna Bacewicz, Lili Boulanger, Florence Price, Fanny Mendelssohn, Cécile Chaminade, Sally Beamish, Agathe Backer Grøndahl, Maria Theresia von Paradis, Clara Schumann, Joy Webb, Ruth Crawford Seeger, Mélanie Bonis, and of course Ethel Smyth.

Tine says, “When I was growing up, it was entirely normal for girls to play both trombone and tuba, and for me playing trumpet felt like the most natural thing in the world. However, in the professional music world this was not necessarily the case. In many countries, there is still a long way to go in terms of gender equality in the brass world. It feels incredibly good to play with the other musicians in tenThing. We trust each other. Without a doubt, trust and security are some of the things I value most when making music with others, and this applies to life in general. She Composes Like a Man is a project that means a lot to me. It means a lot to us.”

You can now listen to three singles from the upcoming release here:
Bleamish: In the Stillness
Boulanger: Deux Morceaux I. Nocturne
Boulanger: Deux Morceaux II. Cortège