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photo of Robert Wilsmore


Wilsmore's diverse range of works for music theatre encompass the contemporary opera Antigone, Live Art collaborations with Bet4 Performance, and the musical Dream. Drawing on influences from British Opera and Noh Theatre to West-end Musicals, his music can be singular in style or wildly eclectic.

Midi file of the Fugue from Prelude, Fugue and Algorithms



Biographical Notes

Born Worcester, England, 1967. Attended Bristol Grammar School. Studied music at Bath College specialising in Baroque Fugue and Composition, and then with Nicholas Sackman at Nottingham University graduating with a doctorate in 1995.

The driving force behind his music is a pull between opposites. Early influences include the counterpoint of Bach and Webern and the operas of Mozart and Tippett.

This pull sometimes manifests itself in separates works such as the 97/98 projects: InsideOutSideIn, a live art collaboration with Bet4 exploring the destruction of personal identity (performed at the Documenta X, Kassel, Germany), and Dream, Shakespeare's comedy reworked as a modern musical in the form of a Savoy opera.




Other works use opposition as a starting point. The Graham Gooch Sonata is a single movement work with a tonal 1st subject, atonal 2nd subject and an integration of the two in the development. The Prelude, Fugue and Algorithms, commissioned by The London Guitar Trio, has an atonal Prelude and a tonal Fugue that are mathematically combined to produce the 'Algorithms'.

Gooch Sonata (2pages)
The score example is the opening of 'The Gooch Sonata' (piano sonata No.3, fp Tony Gray, Cornelius Cardew Competition 1995), so called because its inspiration and structure come from Graham Gooch's innings of 333 against India in the summer of 1990.
In this one movement sonata the tonal first subject and atonal second subject are explored together in a development section that can best be described as sounding like a fight between Tippett and Xenakis.



Selected Works

  • Bouquet with flying lovers (Clarinet quintet. f.p. Bristol University, 1985)
  • The Satyrs of Douris (f.p. Euroboros Ensemble, Tippett Centre, Bath, 1989)
  • Gooch Sonata (Piano Sonata No.3. f.p. Tony Gray, Cornelius Cardew Competition, 1995)
  • From a Torn Corner (f.p. Nottingham University Phil. cond. Nick Sackman, 1994)
    Winner of the 1994 Hallward Prize for composition.
  • Antigone (Opera. 1994)
  • Prelude, Fugue and Algorithms (f.p. London Guitar Trio, BMIC, 1996)
    "Vigorous and effective" Classical Guitar
  • Punch and Judy (Bet4 collaboration. f.p. Tuilleries, Paris, 1996. British f.p. Brewhouse, Burton, 1996)
  • InsideOutsideIn (Bet4 collaboration. f.p. Documenta X. kassel 1997. British f.p. Turtlekeys, London, 1998)
    "Very impressive" Le Relais, Paris.
  • Dream (Comic Operetta. f.p. Three Counties M.S. Derby Guildhall, 1998)
    "A superb score, creative orchestration, and clever libretto" National Operatic & Dramatic Association


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