Press Story

The City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) is delighted to announce the 20 composers that have been commissioned as part of its Sounds New initiative which will see their works premiered by the Orchestra at Symphony Hall, Birmingham on Sunday 29 January 2023 in a showcase of new music.

As part of the CBSO’s centenary in 2020, the Orchestra continued its commitment to championing the music of living composers with its most ambitious commissioning programme to date. 40 Centenary Commissions will have been performed over four seasons; 20 of these were major works from composers across the globe, the last of which will be premiered in the 22-23 season including World Premieres by Brett Dean, Bergrún Snæbjörnsdóttir, Freya Waley-Cohen and Dani Howard and the UK Premiere of Thomas Larcher’s Third Symphony.

In Sounds New the Orchestra shines a spotlight on 20 diverse, creative voices from across the country, who will each write 4-minute works for full orchestra. These short works will be given their World Premieres in a celebration of new music by the CBSO, conducted by Clark Rundell.

The composers are: Anna Appleby, Kristina Arakelyan, Tyriq Baker, Stephane Crayton, Nathan James Dearden, Benjamin Graves, Millicent B James, Joel Järventausta, Chloe Knibbs, Ryan Latimer, Florence Anna Maunders, Ben Nobuto, Laurence Osborn, Rakhi Singh, Angela Slater, Aileen Sweeney, Liam Taylor-West, Héloïse Werner, Bethan Morgan-Williams and Yfat Soul Zisso. See biographies below.

Stephen Maddock, Chief Executive of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, said: ‘I’m hugely excited by this daring initiative and can’t wait to hear what this brilliantly creative group of people have composed for us. Anyone who thinks that the orchestra is a museum needs to get themselves to Symphony Hall in January.’

The 20 commissions were made possible by support from The John Feeney Charitable Trust, which has supported new music for the CBSO since 1955.