Molly Monahan is a San Francisco-based composer, producer, sound designer, audio implementor, and projectionist. With training in everything from classical piano performance to dropping sick beats, her noisemaking blends elements of the past and present into an exciting and refreshing sound experience.
Born and raised in western Michigan, Molly Monahan has since escaped the Midwest to become an award-winning noisemaker, specializing in the fields of composition, production, and sound design. Monahan began as a concert pianist and percussionist before kicking open the flimsy floodgates of the world of composition. Eventually graduating from the Interlochen Arts Academy as a composition major and piano performance minor, she has studied composition in a variety of (much warmer) places, including the Oberlin Conservatory, the Boston Conservatory, and La Schola Cantorum in Paris. Monahan has since had her compositions performed throughout America, Europe, and Asia. With influences ranging from Copland to Saariaho, Monahan’s compositions showcase a diverse musical pallet, which is evident in her acoustic and electroacoustic works. She is currently studying Technology and Applied Composition at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
As a producer, Monahan both collaborates with other artists in producing tracks of a wide variety of genres, as well as her own music under the stage name Papa Molly. Papa Molly combines the irreverence of Slim Shady, the morals of unapologetic lesbian feminism, and truly absurd, extra'd-out production to create the genre known as "bitch music." Papa Molly released her first album "Holy Moly" in 2019, which can be found on Spotify, iTunes/Apple Music, and Bandcamp.
Monahan is also well-versed in the world of sound design and audio programming. In summer of 2018 she released her first self-programmed mobile VR game, "Finding The Malicious Snowman" on the App and Android store, and in fall 2018 released her second application, "Countrytron5000," a country song generator which helps even the most tech-savvy of city folk to connect with their small town roots. She has also worked on the audio for The Sims 4: Discover University, and currently works for mobile game startup DNArt making beats and such for upcoming music remix game, TopMix.
Finally, Monahan also dips her toe into the vast field of visual arts by creating installations and projections that tend to fall squarely in the genre of "too much." As a side note, she dips yet another toe into this field with her hobby as a metalsmith (ask her about it).
AWARDS, ACCOLADES, and PROJECTS
Performed ambient accordion looping music with projections at a rooftop show in the SOMA district of San Francisco in early March 2020
Orchestrated the ballet "The Three Comrades," composed by Pavel Akimkina, which was premiered by the National Latvian Ballet in late November 2019
Projected live at San Francisco music and art show "Mafficking" in November 2019
Performed keyboard with artist Luke Collins at the Milk Bar in November 2019
Worked on the audio team for the Sims 4 "Discover University" Expansion pack, released in November 2019 (voice recording/editing, mixing of promos)
Performed original composition "Breaking" at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in partnership with the ClimateMusic Project in September 2019
Recorded and broadcasted several performances of the World Youth Symphony Orchestra live on the Interlochen Public Radio in June and July 2019
Performed original composition "Breaking" at the Exploratorium in San Francisco in partnership with the ClimateMusic Project in May 2019
Created interactive visual piece "Float" performed by guzheng player and inventor of the QJin Qianqian Jin, performed in May 2019
Performed keyboard with artist Luke Collins at the Hotel Utah Saloon in May 2019
Performed original composition "Frances" at the Future is Female Concert in San Francisco in April 2019
Scored San Francisco Art Institute student film "Macbeth" in Spring 2019
Performed keyboard with Glaçon Garçon on their Spring 2019 West Cost Tour
Sound installation "Bodypad" installed in the 2019 Hot Air Music Festival
Performed live projections for an ambient music show in San Francisco's SoMa district in February 2019
Performed live rap "A Tale of Two Shoelaces" on a concert headlining John Vanderslice in January 2019
Released country song generator "Countrytron5000" on iOS in December 2018
Performed live projections for the Voices of Silicon Valley's rendition of Stockhausen's "Stimmung" in November 2018
Released mobile VR game "Finding the Malicious Snowman" on iOS and Android in Summer 2018
Presented at the 2018 Sounding Now New Music Festival in Singapore
Selected as a Game Audio Network Guild (G.A.N.G.) Scholar for the 2018 Game Design Conference
Composition "Toccata" performed in a 2018 electronic music concert with producers MATMOS in San Francisco, California (concert also produced by Monahan)
Created and ran projections for the audiovisual improvisation concert during the 2018 Estalagem da Ponta do Sol Residency for Contemporary Music and Electronics in Madeira, Portugal
Produced music for San Francisco-based fashion designer JAKE's 2017 "Hero" campaign
Composition "A Volcano in Michigan" performed at the 2017 International Computer Music Conference in Shanghai, China
Honorable Mention recipient of the 2017 TI;ME Competition
Winner of the 2016 NextNotes Competition, with composition "Ameriquartet: III. Susanna!" performed in Minneapolis, Minnesota
Winner of the 2016 MATA Jr. Competition, with composition "Green Line Reverie" performed at National Sawdust in Brooklyn, New York
Honorable Mention recipient of YoungArts 2016-2017
Composition "Fruity Juice" performed at the 2016 Basklarinet Festijn in Utrecht, the Netherlands
Second place of the 2016 Christopher Newport University's Young Composer Competition
Composition "Ameriquartet: III. Susanna!" performed at the opening festival of the 2016 Michigan Youth Arts Festival in Kalamazoo, Michigan
Recipient of the 2015 Neil Rabaut Composition Award
Second place of the 2015 Webster University's Young Composer Competition, with composition "Meadow Winds Suite" performed in Saint Louis, Missouri