LAB10: Howard Skempton

Wednesday 8 November 2017, 12-4pm

In Lab 10 our visitor is celebrated composer Howard Skempton. Howard joins us as part of a two-day celebration of his music, with performances by staff and students. As a founder of the Scratch Orchestra with Cornelius Cardew and Michael Parsons, Howard has been at the forefront of exploratory music in the UK for the last fifty years, and he will talk about form and function. The first half of the lab will include some practical work trying out work in progress by lab composers.

The lab meets from 12-2pm in CM119 and then we move to CM106 from 2-4pm for Howard’s talk.

Howard Skempton [CM106]: Reflections on Form
Howard Skempton is a professional composer whose works have been published by Oxford University Press since 1994. His best known work is Lento (1990), commissioned by the BBC for the BBC Symphony Orchestra and was performed at 2010 BBC Proms. Much of his music is available on CD. The Oxford University Press website includes discography, a biography and details of recent compositions. He is an Honorary Member of the Royal Academy of Music.

Only the Sound Remains was shortlisted for the 2011 Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards. The piece, a large scale composition for viola and chamber ensemble, was written for the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, and had its premiere in 2010. Howard has had previous success at the Awards with his string quartet,Tendrils, written for the 2004 Huddersfield Festival. It won the Royal Philharmonic Society award for chamber-scale composition. Tendrils also won the Chamber Music category in the BBC Radio 3’s British Composer Awards. The Moon is Flashing won the 2008 award in the vocal category.

Howard has continued to compose choral music, including an Advent antiphon for Merton College Oxford and anthems for Chester and Wells Cathedrals.

 [Drawing (c) Trevor Skempton]

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