Nicholas Simpson

Nicholas Simpson was born in Manchester and read law at Nottingham University . For ten years he played in rock bands, making a small but still faintly detectable impact on 1980’s pop, before studying composition and conducting at Trinity College of Music in London . At Trinity he had lessons for four years with John Tavener, winning the Chappell Prize for composition and the Ricordi Prize for conducting (twice). In 1987 he was a finalist in the national Yehudi Menuhin and Royal Overseas League competitions and, NickSwhilst still a student, his first string quartet was given by the Roth Quartet at the Purcell Room.

In the 1990s Simpson earned a living as a criminal lawyer, composing in his spare time, but quit to be a professional musician on moving back to Manchester in 1998. His music has been played in Europe and the USA by artists as diverse as the Composers’ Ensemble, the B.B.C. Symphony Orchestra and the English String Quartet. He has written music in a wide variety of genres, including two symphonies and many chamber pieces, and is one of a small (and undistinguished) number of people whose work has been played both on Radio 1 and Radio 3. He has led courses for the Sound Inventors composition in education team which won a Royal Philharmonic Society award.

In 2005 his Symphony No. 2 was recorded by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and broadcast on Radio 3. His piece for the Fell Clarinet Quartet, Mardale Changes, has been performed at the Bridgewater Hall, Manchester and in Scotland. He is now working on a 3rd symphony. Scheduled for 2007 were two performances of his oratorio Recreation, recently nominated for the British Composer awards. He has conducted the Gorton Philharmonic Orchestra and the Halifax Symphony Orchestra in West Yorkshire. He has also conducted the Amaretti Chamber Orchestra, Chelsea Symphony Orchestra, Salford Symphony Orchestra and the Manchester Beethoven Orchestra. Nick Simpson is married and has three children.