Anthony Payne was born in London in 1936 and educated at Dulwich College and Durham University. An extensive list of commissions includes four major works for the BBC Proms as well as works for the BBC Philharmonic and London Sinfonietta. His discography includes three CDs of chamber music. He has published books on Schoenberg, Frank Bridge, and Elgar’s Third Symphony, the completion of which, in 1997, brought him worldwide acclaim. There are now six CDs of this in the catalogue. He has been Visiting Professor at Mills College, California and Composition Tutor at the New South Wales Conservatorium, Australia, and is a frequent broadcaster for BBC Radio and Television. He holds Honorary Doctorates from the Universities of Birmingham, Durham and Kingston, and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music. He is married to the soprano Jane Manning, with whom he formed the ensemble Jane’s Minstrels in 1988.
Anthony Payne, who celebrated his 80th birthday in 2016, was born in London and educated at Dulwich College and Durham University.
His commissioned works include four major orchestral pieces for the BBC Proms, as well as pieces for the BBC Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, and Cheltenham Festival, and a substantial catalogue of chamber music. He won British Composer Awards for Visions and Journeys for orchestra in 2003 and for his Second String Quartet, commissioned by the Allegri Quartet, in 2011. With his wife, the soprano Jane Manning, he formed the outstanding young ensemble Jane’s Minstrels, for whom he has written several pieces. Many of his works have been performed internationally, and an extensive discography includes three complete CDs of his music.
Recent commissions have included an acclaimed chamber arrangement of Bruckner’s Second Symphony for the Royal Academy of Music, orchestrations of Vaughan Williams’s Four Last Songs for the 2013 Proms, ‘Of Land, Sea and Sky’ for chorus and orchestra, premiered at the BBC Proms in July 2016 and ‘Pictured Within: Birthday Variations for M.C.B.’ for the BBC Proms in August 2019. The Villiers Quartet premiered his Third Quartet in September 2018.
He has published books on Schoenberg, Frank Bridge, and Elgar’s Third Symphony, the completion of which, in 1997, brought him international praise, and Evening Standard, South Bank Show and New York Critics’ Circle Awards. It has been performed by many of the world’s leading orchestras, including, in the US, the Philadelphia, Chicago, and National Symphony Orchestras, the Czech Philharmonic and all the major UK orchestras. There are now six separate CD recordings in the catalogue, as well as three of his more recent completion of Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance March no. 6. He also orchestrated Elgar’s ‘Crown of India’ for the BBC Philharmonic who have recorded it for Chandos under Sir Andrew Davis. He has recently been awarded an Elgar Medal by the Elgar Society.
He has been Visiting Professor at Mills College, California and Composition Tutor at the New South Wales Conservatorium, and was Professorial Fellow in the Composition Department at the University of East Anglia from 2012-2013.
Earlier known as a perceptive musical journalist (The Times, Daily Telegraph, Independent, Country Life), he is a frequent broadcaster for the BBC, and has appeared in television documentaries on Elgar, Vaughan Williams, Parry and Delius.
He holds Honorary Doctorates from the Universities of Birmingham, Durham and Kingston, and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music, where he was Arts Research Fellow for 2 years.