Glyndebourne Selects Participants for Female Composer Scheme

Clockwise from top left: Ninfea Cruttwell-Reade, Cecilia Livingston, Anna Appleby and Ailie Robertson.

Glyndebourne Selects Participants for Female Composer Scheme

'Balancing the Score' will take place over two years and seeks to help address the under-representation of female composers in classical music.

Glyndebourne opera has announced the first four participants in a new development scheme for female composers. Anna Appleby, Ninfea Cruttwell-Reade, Cecilia Livingston and Ailie Robertson will begin the scheme in January 2019.

Balancing the Score: Supporting Female Composers, which issued a call for applicants in June, was established to help address the under-representation of female composers in classical music.

Over two years, the four participating composers will be introduced to commissioning opportunities, attend rehearsals and meet professional opera makers and performers.

The participants will also have the opportunity work with Glyndebourne’s resident orchestras. Each composer will receive an annual bursary of £1,000 to cover expenses.

Ahead of January, the four have each written a short composition that will be performed at one of the four upcoming performances of La traviata: Behind the Curtain during the 2018 Glyndebourne Tour. 

About the composers
Anna Appleby is a Manchester-based composer who has written for a range of forces and groups, including the Royal Northern Sinfonia, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the orchestra of Dutch National Ballet. In 2016 she was appointed as the youngest-ever Music Fellow with Rambert Dance Company, and has premiered works with choreographers at the Southbank Centre, the National Theatre River Stage, Ignition Dance Festival and RADA Studios.

Ninfea Cruttwell-Reade is composer and cellist based in Edinburgh. She writes music for old, new and damaged musical instruments. Recent commissions include Table Talk, a large ensemble brass work for the Tanglewood Music Festival, and three new chamber works for the Lichfield Music Festival, where she was composer-in-residence in 2018. Cruttwell-Reade is currently a doctoral candidate in Music Composition at Princeton University.

Cecilia Livingston is a British-Canadian composer and specialises in music for voice. Currently a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Postdoctoral Fellow in Music at King’s College London, she was a 2015–2017 Composition Fellow at American Opera Projects in New York. She was also winner of the Canadian Music Centre’s 2018 Toronto Emerging Composer Award. Livingston holds a doctorate in composition from the University of Toronto.

Ailie Robertson from Edinburgh is an award-winning composer and harper whose work crosses the boundaries of traditional and contemporary music. She recently completed her PhD in composition at Trinity Laban Conservatoire. This year she has written works for the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Bang on a Can, the St Magnus International Festival, Celtic Connections Festival and Ensemble Perpetuo. She was recently announced as Composer-in-Residence for Sound Festival for the next three years.

For more on Balancing the Score, visit

Published on 20 November 2018

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