Friday, 11 November 2016


There's only two weeks left for Norfolk schools to apply to be in my Children's Opera in association with Into Opera!

The opera, A King’s Ransom, offers an unusual twist on the well-known story of Robin Hood.  It explores what happens when Robin is unable to save the day and instead the community must look within itself for answers to its problems.  

The opera was originally written in 1994 and, twenty-one years on, Patrick and brother Andy, the opera’s librettist, have returned to this work with fresh eyes and are collaborating with Into Opera to revise and expand the work.  Together they aim to develop A King’s Ransom into a National Education Project.  Into Opera are embarking on this journey in partnership with the Prince’s Foundation for Children and the Arts.

A King’s Ransom is an opera written especially for children to sing.  Each time this opera is staged we aim to work with four schools; integrating, collaborating, working side by side and learning from each other with this opera at its core.  The characters in the opera clearly split into four chorus sections: the villagers, soldiers, bagmen and masons.  Each of these chorus sections will be sung by a separate school.  

So, if you're a school in Norfolk with Key Stage 2 pupils and want to find out more, email: for info.  

The opera is being launched in early 2018 in Norfolk and performances around the nation will follow.  For more information on the opera visit the Into Opera website

Sunday, 9 October 2016


A nice interview appears in this season's edition of Palatinate, the student magazine of my alma mater Durham University.

Friday, 12 August 2016


It's been great to see that Emma Johnson's new album featuring my Clarinet Concerto was made Classic FM's Album of the Week this week.  John Suchet has played two of the movements from my concerto on his main morning show and the response has been wonderful.

I've produced this video about writing the concerto for Emma, giving a little insight into the creative process.  Hope you enjoy it.

Best of luck with the album Emma!

An English Fantasy, recorded with the BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by Phil Ellis and released on Nimbus Records, is available now from iTunes and Amazon.

Tuesday, 9 August 2016


Well, the World Premiere of Revelation and Beatitudes could not have gone better!

Toronto skyline from the islands
After an overnight stay in Toronto, I arrived in Elora and went straight to the Elora Festival Singers' rehearsal in St John's Church, Elora.  What a beautiful sound this choir makes under Noel Edison's baton!  You can hear them rehearsing 'Blessed are the Meek' from Beatitudes in this short clip.

And one of the best bits of news was that, not only were the choir performing Revelation and Beatitudes, they were also premiering the stand-alone pieces that will feature on the album!  I was so touched that they had decided to use my new works to make up the whole concert.  

The next afternoon there was one more rehearsal of everything in the performance venue, St Joseph's Church, Fergus, and then on to the big night itself.  

Rehearsing Revelation

The World Premiere
The choir performed impeccably and the audience loved the music to the extent that they gave me, Noel and the choir a standing ovation - I took that as a good sign for the future of the works!  As an encore, they performed Quanta Qualia in the arrangement I did for Voces8 with choir and saxophone - a really beautiful way to end a wonderful evening.

As I type, the choir are busy recording the new works for the Naxos label - the album will be out in March next year along with the sheet music (to be published by Walton / GIA Music), so watch this space for more news.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016


Well, the Elora Festival is now in full swing and it's just over a week to go until the premiere of Revelation and Beatitudes with the Elora Festival And Singers - I'm so looking forward to being there!

The premiere of Revelation and Beatitudes takes place in Fergus, Ontario on 21 July 2016 as part of the Elora Festival.  Click here for tickets details.

Music Scores available from Walton Music, Autumn 2016.

Naxos recording available early 2017.


I'm really pleased to reveal that the two new choral collections I've just completed are to be premiered at the prestigious Elora Festival, Canada on 21 July 2016!

Revelation and Beatitudes will be premiered by the Grammy-Nominated Elora Festival Singers under the direction of Noel Edison.  The two new collections will then be recorded a few days later for a release in early 2017 on the leading Naxos record label.  The scores are set to be published in Autumn 2016 by one of the world's leading choral music publishers, Walton Music, part of the global GIA publishing house.  This will make the music available around the world for others choirs to perform.

The first of the new works, Revelation, is a collection of nice pieces based on text from the last book of the Bible, the Book of Revelation, written by St John on the island of Patmos.  The pieces are set for a cappella SATB choir and encapsulate the main themes of one of the most puzzling books in the Bible.  

The second work, Beatitudes, also to be premiered at the festival, is a collection setting the eight Beatitudes of Christ from the Gospel of St Matthew.  Written for SATB choir and piano, Beatitudes aims to capture the essence of Christ's message that those people normally thought of as being unfortunate are, in fact, blessed.

These were such inspiring and dramatic words to set to music and I am so excited that I will be able to be present at their premiere in Canada.  The Elora Festival Singers under the direction of Noel Edison have a great reputation and I am sure they will bring a freshness of approach and musical expertise to their interpretation of this exciting project.  And I’m thrilled to have the backing of Naxos and Walton Music, two really respected forces in the choral world.

The premiere of Revelation and Beatitudes takes place in Fergus, Ontario on 21 July 2016 as part of the Elora Festival.  Click here for tickets details.

Music Scores available from Walton Music, Autumn 2016.

Naxos recording available early 2017.

Monday, 25 April 2016


It's great to see that Emma Johnson's new album featuring my Clarinet Concerto now has a release date of 12th August 2016.

Emma Johnson is a clarinettist who career was launched in 1984 when, at the age of 17, she won the BBC Young Musician of the Year.  An English Fantasy, recorded with the BBC Concert Orchestra conducted by Phil Ellis and released on Nimbus Records, features recordings of four clarinet concertos written especially for her by four English composers.

Watch the video to hear Emma talking about the new album.

Friday, 4 March 2016


To mark the 60th anniversary of the death of Gerald Finzi, Decca Classics – in collaboration with the Finzi Trust – today released an album comprising many of the British composer’s finest works. 

I have always loved and felt inspired by the deeply English qualities of Finzi’s music and I was very pleased to be asked by Decca to write a new arrangement of Fear No More the Heat of the Sun - one of his most beautiful songs - for the album.  

It was a real joy to arrange it for the award-winning Aurora Orchestra and Classic BRIT Award-winning saxophonist Amy Dickson and I wish them all the best with the new release.

Click here to watch the short video I've created about the piece.

Monday, 8 February 2016