Brian Ferneyhough

b. 1943

British

Summary

Brian Ferneyhough is widely recognized as one of today's foremost living composers. Since the mid-1970s, when he first gained widespread international recognition, his music has earned him an enviable reputation as one of the most influential creative personalities and significant musical thinkers on the contemporary scene.

Biography

Brian Ferneyhough is widely recognized as one of today's foremost living composers. Since the mid-1970s, when he first gained widespread international recognition, his music has earned him an enviable reputation as one of the most influential creative personalities and significant musical thinkers on the contemporary scene.

Ferneyhough was born in Coventry, England, in 1943 and received formal musical training at the Birmingham School of Music and the Royal Academy of Music, London. In 1968 he was awarded the Mendelssohn Scholarship, which enabled him to continue his studies in Amsterdam with Ton de Leeuw, and the following year obtained a scholarship to study with Klaus Huber at the Basel Conservatoire.

Following Ferneyhough’s move to mainland Europe, his music began to receive much wider recognition. The Gaudeamus Composers’ Competition in the Netherlands awarded Ferneyhough prizes in three successive years (1968-70) for his Sonatas for String Quartet, Epicycle and Missa Brevis respectively. The Italian section of the ISCM at its 1972 competition gave Ferneyhough an honourable mention (second place) for Firecycle Beta and two years later a special prize for Time and Motion Study III which was considered the best work submitted in all categories.

Recent works have included Inconjunctions (2014), Contraccolpi (2016), and a collection of encounters influenced by Christopher Tye, Umbrations (2001-2017), premiered by the Arditti Quartet and Ensemble Modern at Wittener Tage für Neue Kammermusik.

Associated with the most prestigious teaching institutions and international summer schools for contemporary music, from 1984 to 1996 Ferneyhough was Composition Course Co-ordinator at the biennial Darmstädter Ferienkurse für Neue Musik. In 1984 he was made Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and he has since been named a member of the Berlin Akademie der Künste, the Bayrische Akademie der Schönen Künste and a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music. Most recently, he was awarded the 2007 Ernst von Siemens Music Prize.

Performances

26th April 2024

PERFORMERS
Sinfonietta Dresden
LOCATION
Hochschule für Musik Dresden, Konzertsaal, Dresden, Germany

Photos