John McCabe (composer)

John McCabe (Composer)

John McCabe (composer)

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John McCabe CBE (born 21 April 1939) is an English composer and pianist.

Biography

John McCabe was born in Huyton, Liverpool, Merseyside. A prolific composer from an early age, he had written thirteen symphonies by the time he was eleven (Rickards 2001). After studies in Manchester and Munich he embarked upon a career as a composer and virtuoso pianist (he still tours internationally as a recitalist). He has worked in almost every genre, though large-scale forms lie at the heart of his catalogue with five symphonies, fifteen concertante works and eight ballet scores to his name. Like many composers of his generation, McCabe experimented with serialism in his early career but his mature style is characterised by a dramatic post-tonalism, and vivid orchestrations.

He first became known as a pianist, playing Bax, Corigliano, Haydn, Hindemith, Rawsthorne, and Webern.

As a composer, he first gained attention with the orchestral song cycle Notturni ed Alba (1970). He has written five acknowledged symphonies (1965-2000), a number of ballets, string quartets, and solo instrumental music (particularly for the piano). However, it is for his concerti that he is perhaps best known. He has written four for his own instrument, the piano (1966-76), and three for one or two violins (1959, 1980, 2003) as well as one each for viola (1962), harpsichord (1968), oboe d'amore (1972), clarinet (1977), orchestra (1982), trumpet (1987) and flute (1990), and double concertos for viola and cello...
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