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Cowie, Edward

Cowie, Edward (b Birmingham, 1943). Eng. composer and painter. Began to compose at age of 11. Chorister, Gloucester Cath. 1955–7. Worked in Poland 1971, being encouraged by Lutoslawski. Lect., Lancaster Univ. 1973. Visited USA 1977. Guest prof. of mus., Kassel Univ. 1979, prof. of creative arts, Univ. of Wollongong, NSW, 1983, composer-in-residence RLPO 1983–6. Settled in Australia, where he founded Australian Composers' Ensemble 1988 and became dir., Australian Sinfonietta 1989. Deeply interested in ornithology. Has painted oils and watercolours; his Choral Sym. (1981–2) was inspired by paintings by Turner. Also fascinated by Australian criminal Ned Kelly, making him the basis of several works, incl. an opera. Prin. works: STAGE WORKS: Commedia, Op.12, opera (1976–8); Kelly, Op.23, opera (1980–2); Kate Kelly's Roadshow, Op.27, mez., ens. (1982). ORCH.: Concerto for Orchestra, Op.19 (1979–80); Leonardo, Op.20, chamber orch. (1980–1); sym. No.1 (The American), Op.21 (1980–1), No.2 (The Australian), Op.28 (1982–3); concs.: bcl. and tape, Op.1b (1969), cl. No.2, Op.5 (1975), pf., Op.8 (1976–7), hp., Op.26 (1981–2). CHAMBER MUSIC: str. qts.: No.1 (1973), No.2, Op.11 (1977), No.3, Op.31 No.1 (1983), No.4 (Australia II), Op.31 No.2 (1983); Kelly Passacaglia, str. qt. (1980); Harlequin, Op.15, hp. (1980); Commedia Lazzis, Op.17, guitar (1980); Kelly-Nolan-Kelly, Op.22, cl. in A (1980).

Also many choral and vocal works, comps. for brass, and for solo pf.

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