Kirsten Milenko
Kirsten Milenko
Composer • Producer • Writer



Project composed for dancer/choreographer Hayley Page for the 2017 Hamburg Ballet Young Choreographers Series; this work was performed onstage with the dancers.

“The cooperation of music and dance is very much to be praised. And music is a part of the choreography” - Gisela Sonnenburg

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De-Voir ; performance at the Hamburg Opera Stabile in tandem with the 2017 Hamburg Ballett Junge Choreografen. Photographed by Kiran West.

De-Voir; performance at the Hamburg Opera Stabile in tandem with the 2017 Hamburg Ballett Junge Choreografen. Photographed by Kiran West.

Kalle Hakosalo performing We Are Only Breathing

Kalle Hakosalo performing We Are Only Breathing

We Are Only Breathing

Solo percussionist performing marimba and 10 Thai bao gongs. Choreographic movements composed into the score for ease of movement and flow within the instrument body.

Premiered by Kalle Hakosalo at Pulsar Festival - Copenhagen 2018.

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Symphonic Poetry

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Symphony d'aere (2017)

Wind symphony and solo violin

A piece on the subject of plastic pollution and its presence of interaction within our world. The extent of its touch is beyond anything we as a human race have so far experienced. Like a work of Frankenstein, plastics created by humans have now determined a life of its own, beyond our grasp of control or even our influence.

We have created substances that have stepped beyond us and no longer need our intervention to have methods of definition within the world. We are part of our environment, completely inseparable from its flux and its flow. Everything that we interact with entwined with our daily lives and eventually our bodies. There is no separation.


l'espace (2016)


A narrative work set over the open ocean, l'espace details the presence of a small ship amidst blooming storm clouds. Designed as the soundscape for a pas de deux, the work is fable telling of siren-song leading to the demise of one character. Here, the open ocean takes the role of the siren as it attempts to seduce the ship into its depths to drown. It is an interaction of dream-states between the soft lull of the ocean's call and its rage as the ship awakens.  

Opia (2018)

Chamber orchestra

An analysis of the phenomenon 'opia' as coined in the Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows, defining neologisms for emotions that do not otherwise have a descriptive term. Composed for and premiered by the Esbjerg Ensemble in tandem with Pulsar Festival 2018.

Opia (n.) the ambiguous intensity of looking someone in the eye, which can feel simultaneously invasive and vulnerable—their pupils glittering, bottomless and opaque—as if you were peering through a hole in the door of a house, able to tell that there’s someone standing there, but unable to tell if you’re looking in or looking out.


Night is worn (2019)

Sinfonietta with soprano and countertenor

Premiered 8th March 2019 by the RDAM Sinfonietta conducted by Jean Thorel with soloists Emma Ilona Mustaniemi (soprano) and Stephen George Yeseta (countertenor). Text sourced from William Blake’s ‘Songs of Innocence and of Experience’. Excerpt:

              The thrones of Kings are shaken,

              Tombs in desolate places:

              Night is worn

              And the morn rises

                                from slumberous Mass.


The Artefact Series

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Beneath every sound lies a spectrum of colours that are most often hidden within broader aspects of the passing world. These are the artefacts of everyday existence and the inspiration for a series of works that act as a portrait to trace the micro inflections of our world.

All sounds are drawn from the source instrument. Each work focuses on a close collaboration between myself and the individual performer. When presented in tandem with the macro sounds of conventional performance, the Artefact Series works to sketch a portrait of natural resonance within the instrumental body alongside the inflections of a particular performer within one short frame of time. Performance is for live and fixed electronics with the featured artists.

The series is grounded on a fusion of musique concrète and contemporary sound spatialisation to immerse the listener into specific environmental structures. The rationale behind the series is to discover inflections known to a specific performer on their instrument and explore these to create a sonic hemisphere of music which offers immersion to the listener and a new perspective on contemporary classical music and the performers who bring to life the music we listen to. 

Artefact Works

Ex Aere

Soprano voice & double bass; Sylvie Louise Woods, Jacques Emery


Violoncello; James Morley


Piano, double bass & bass clarinet; Kirsten Milenko, Jacques Emery, Max Miller Boch

Lux aeterna

Vibraphone; Bartek Sutt

ad forestum

Guitar; Dennis van Rooyen

What is now proved was once only imagined
— William Blake