John Pickard (composer)

John Pickard (composer)

John Pickard (born 11 September, 1963), is a British classical composer.

Pickard was born in Burnley, Lancashire, England. He studied music and composition at the University of Wales, under Welsh composer William Mathias, and later in The Netherlands under Louis Andriessen and in 1989 was awarded a PhD in composition. Since 1993 he has been Senior Lecturer in Music at the University of Bristol. John Pickard is also conductor of the University of Bristol Symphony Orchestra and Choral Society.

Pickard has composed a number of critically well-received orchestral and instrumental works, among them four symphonies and a number of symphonic works, including perhaps his best-known piece, "The Flight of Icarus", which San Francisco Chronicle called "a translucent and achingly lovely memorial to the fallen Icarus… a serious contender for the most exciting musical premiere of 2006." [ [ 'Flight of Icarus' soars in bravura U.S. premiere ] ] His orchestral writing has been highly praised: in March 2008 The Times commented that "his orchestral mastery is total." [ [ John Pickard: The Flight of Icarus ] ] while, in April 2008 The Guardian described his music as "at its best virtuosically effective, in a style that never seems either self-consciously conservative or too stubbornly middle-of-the-road." [ [,,2276083,00.html John Pickard: The Flight of Icarus ] ] He has also composed a Piano Concerto, a Trombone Concerto "The Spindle of Necessity", recorded by Christian Lindberg and four string quartets. The Strad stated that the fourth quartet was "one of the best pieces of British chamber music to be heard for years", while Tempo, reviewing a recording of all four quartets offered the opinion that “ if Pickard were never to write another quartet in his life, his place among the greats is secure”. [Tempo No.57 (223) January 2003 pp.68-75 ]

John Pickard is also the General Editor of the Elgar Complete Edition.

elected Works

*"Symphony No. 2" (1989);
*"Sea-Change" (1989),
*"The Flight of Icarus" (1990)
* "String Quartet No. 1" (1991)
*"Channel Firing" (1992-93)
* "String Quartet No. 2" (1993)
* "String Quartet No. 3" (1994)
*"Symphony No. 3" (1997)
*"The Spindle of Necessity (Trombone Concerto)" (1997)
* "String Quartet No. 4" (1998)
* "Piano Concerto" (2000)
*"The Borders of Sleep": song cycle for baritone and piano (2001)
*"Gaia Symphony" (1991-2003) for brass band
* "Sonata for Violin and Piano" (2004)
*"Eden" (2005) for brass band
*"Agamemnon's Tomb" (2007) for three vocal soloists, chorus and orchestra

External links

* [ Official Website]
* [! Recordings of works by John Pickard at BIS]


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