Daisy Press was raised on the buses, planes, hotels, and stages of a large-scale international rock ’n’ roll tour, on which both her parents performed for over 40 years. Since then, she has become a ferocious and ardent interpreter and creator of experimental classical (and non-classical) music in the United States and Europe.
In the modern classical genre, Daisy regularly performs as a soloist with Vienna-based ensembles Klangforum Wien and Phace, and with them has sung the work of composers Bernard Lang, Martin Smolka, Rebecca Saunders, and Fausto Romitelli at the Wiener Konzerthaus and the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg.
In the world of nightlife and pop music, for several years Daisy served as the lead backing singer/dancer for the band Chromeo. On Broadway, she originated the Horned Goddess role in The Devouring, where she sang her feminine-vibes arrangement of Nine Inch Nails’ “Closer” every night. At Brooklyn’s noted and notorious House of Yes, Daisy has served as singer-in-residence, and regularly collaborates with its truly astounding in-house aerialists, dancers, and circus performers, composing, improvising, and performing works which embody virtuosity, ecstasy, holiness, humor, and necessary stings of irreverence.
On her own, over the last 20 years, Daisy has become a specialist in the music of 12th-century mystic and polymath Hildegard of Bingen. Not a traditionalist, Press incorporates elements of North Indian (Hindustani) ragas into her unusual and extraordinary interpretations of the original Medieval chants.
In our conversation, we looked at the path of Daisy’s creativity – from discovering Hildegard to releasing this stunning new album of her works. The non-linearity of the path stands out, as does Daisy’s insistence on leaning into what feels good, what she WANTS to work on in the moment. What would it be like for YOU to make your creative and artistic choices in this way?
The album is You Are the Flower – Music from Hildegard von Bingen – Vol. 1; from StorySound Records.