a festive concert overture with real rhythmic vitality."
Helen Wallace, The Times
successful attempt to provide a modern twist to the Romantic concert
Mathew Rye, Daily Telegraph
New Ribbons (Barbican Hall)
was born in Saltash, Cornwall, in 1962. He studied at Colchester Institute with Philip Cannon and Alan Bullard and at City University London with Simon Holt. He has written works for many ensembles including the Bingham String Quartet, the Schidloff String Quartet, the Composers Ensemble, Fiddlesticks, Onyx Trio, Jane's Minstrels, Britten Sinfonia, English Northern Philharmonia, the Jupiter Orchestra, Ensemble of London, COMA, City of London Sinfonia and English Chamber Orchestra.
His works have been performed at venues including the Bath International Festival, the Oxford Contemporary Music festival, the Barbican Hall, the Queen Elizabeth Hall, and York, Reading and Cambridge universities. Speare's music has been broadcast on BBC Radio 3, Classic FM and national television. Commissions include Night Song for Opera North, Curtain Raiser for pianist Joanna MacGregor, and The Angels for London Concert Choir (with whom he was Composer in Association for three years 1999-2002) performed with children's voices and the English Chamber Orchestra at the South Bank. The Cornwall and Devon Youth orchestras collaborated for the first time to play Tamara's Leaving which was specially commissioned to be played as part of the BBC Music Live festival and was broadcast live on BBC local radio stations in Cornwall, Devon, Guernsey and Jersey in May 2000. The following year the London Schools Symphony Orchestra conducted by Martin Pring gave a performance of the newly commissioned work Leal Nevra alongside a performance of The Fields Beyond, at the Guildhall, London. Since 2007 the Purcell School has annually commissioned Simon to write pieces for mixed ability string players as part of their Strings and Things outreach project.
Simon Speare has been appointed Head of Composition and Contemporary Music at the Royal College of Music Junior Department starting in September 2014. He is a teacher of composition at the Purcell School and taught for several years at Royal Holloway, University of London. He is a committed and experienced music educator who has run workshops for students ranging from pre-school to postgraduate level. He has enjoyed residencies at Primary Schools in Tower Hamlets and has been a leader of composition courses for the award winning spnm Sound Inventors scheme and subsequently for Sound and Music. He is a respected adjudicator and has been a judge for the British Composer Awards. When directing student ensembles he is a passionate advocate of new music. His dynamic, carefully planned teaching programmes have been noted by OFSTED to be 'excellent'. His music has been recorded by Big Noise, the Bingham String Quartet, Fiddlesticks and the British Clarinet Ensemble.
He is married with a son and daughter and lives in London.
has its own strong identity … he pares down the orchestra to produce a very
loose and transparent texture in which you can hear everything that's going
Mark Forkgen, Classical Music
Frost at Midnight (Queen Elizabeth Hall 1999)
Simon Speare: 00 44 (0)20 8521 5259 or email firstname.lastname@example.org