May ’17 News Digest

Editor's digest of recent and upcoming news
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The programme for this summer’s BBC Proms was announced on April 20th, and there will be world, UK or London premières from 13 British and Irish composers: Julian Anderson, Gerald Barry, Sir Harrison Birtwistle, Tom Coult, Jonathan Dove, Brian Elias, Cheryl Frances-Hoad, Hannah Kendall, Sir James MacMillan, Mark Simpson, Mark-Anthony Turnage, Judith Weir and Roderick Williams. Pieces by Thomas Adès, Anthony Payne/Elgar, Rebecca Saunders, David Sawer and Kate Whitley will also feature.

The shortlists for this year’s Royal Philharmonic Society awards have been announced; among the items of UK new music interest are: Memorial Ground, East Neuk Festival (Audiences and Engagement); Mark Simpson, Hommage à Kurtág and Rebecca Saunders, Skin (Chamber-Scale Composition); Philip Venables, 4.48 Psychosis (Large-Scale Composition); Royal Opera House, 4.48 Psychosis (Opera and Music Theatre); Andrew Gourlay, Héloïse Werner (Young Artists). Complete lists are available at:

Philip Venables, having something of a golden spell at the moment, has recently signed with Ricordi London, the publisher has announced.

Eamonn Quinn, curator and founder of Louth Contemporary Music Society, has been awarded the Belmont Prize for contemporary music 2018 by the Forberg Schneider Foundation. (See issue 2 for a feature on the LCMS.)

Michael Finnissy has been appointed Composer-in-Residence at St John’s College, Cambridge. The appointment lasts until 2019, and is expected to yield four choral anthems and five organ ‘reflections’, as well as teaching and recital activities.

In March, Sally Cavender, Director of Performance Music at Faber Music, was awarded the RPS Leslie Boosey Award in recognition of her contribution to furthering contemporary music in Great Britain.

This month’s lead feature contributor, Sam Richards, has recently begun a fortnightly show on new, newer and newest music for Soundart Radio. For details see

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