James Francis Brown
James Francis Brown studied composition firstly with Hans Heimler (himself a pupil of Alban Berg) under the scholarship from the Surrey Scheme for Exceptionally Gifted Children and subsequently at the Royal Academy of Music. From 1994, James Francis Brown's major works have been heard regularly at the South Bank and Wigmore Hall and have included a Piano Sonata (1994), a Viola Sonata (1995), and the String Trio (1996) for the Leopold String Trio which, following its première at the Deal Festival, has enjoyed numerous performances in London, Glasgow and as part of a British Council Tour.
"My music aims to utilise various "traditional" musical elements as a conscious reaction against certain trends in contemporary music. Thus I make free use of tonal structures showing the influence of twentieth-century French music, neo-classicism and modern jazz to create a personal language."
The music of Peter Fribbins combines a gift for melody, drama and passion, with a directness and uncompromising clarity. His music is frequently performed throughout the UK, Europe and beyond and is increasingly popular with both musicians and audiences alike. He was born in London, winning a composition scholarship to the Royal Academy of Music at the age of 17 and subsequently studying at Royal Holloway and Nottingham universities. Studies with the German composer Hans Werner Henze led to the staging of his collaborative opera ‘Anna Bella’ in Italy when still only 20.
John Hawkins, born in 1949, studied composition with Elisabeth Lutyens and Malcolm Williamson. Broadcasts include 'A Sea Symphony' (BBC Scottish), part of a trilogy of sea pieces. 'Voices from the Sea' is available on Meridian's CDE 84496 'John Hawkins - Voices from the Sea and other pieces'. 'This World' for choir and two trumpets, based on words by William Blake was broadcast by the BBC Singers. Also based on Blake’s ideas are 'Urizen' for viola and 'Fuzon' for string quartet. 'Urizen' has been performed many times worldwide in versions both with piano and with chamber orchestra – it can be seen in several performances on YouTube.