golden fields

Andrew Lowe Watson

ANDREW LOWE WATSON was born in London in 1958.

He studied piano and composition at Trinity College of Music, London and Trinity College, Cambridge where his tutors were Hugh Wood, Robin Holloway and Richard Marlow. In 1978 he won the University Chamber Choir Composition Prize and his setting of Gerald Manley Hopkins' 'The Windhover' was heard on the Backs by an audience of 3,000.
At his London debut recital at the Purcell Room in 1983 Stephen Pettit wrote in The Times, ''In Prokofiev's enormously long and terrifyingly difficult Eighth Sonata he proved himself a virtuoso very much in the mould of Pollini''.
Andrew formed a jazz trio in 1988 which had a two year residency at the Cafe Royal in London's West End.
In 1990 he performed as pianist with the modern dance group YB Dance, presenting some of his own music in a programme which toured the UK, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
His musical 'Strange Domain', based on Alain-Fournier's novel 'Le Grand Meaulnes' was produced by Elephant Theatre at the Canal Cafe Theatre, London in 1992 and two of the songs were broadcast live on BBC Radio. Ian Herbert, writing in Theatre Record, declared "Lowe-Watson's music, with its echoes of Michael Legrand, is the stuff of musical theatre...I say this new ALW could be as successful as the other one ".
In 1994 Andrew was commissioned by the Brueder Grimm Maerchenfestspiele in Hanau, Germany to write the music for a new Grimm musical, 'Vom der Fischer un syner Fru'. The show was a resounding hit with public and critics and a total of seven more new works followed. One of these, 'Die Bremer Stadtmusikanten', was revived the following season and again in 2003 before playing a week in a sold-out 2,000 seater theatre in Tottori, Japan.
As Musical Director Andrew presented the British premiere of Sergei Dreznin's rock opera 'Ophelia' at the Guildford School of Acting (now the Conservatoire) and coached students from GITIS, the Moscow Theatre Academy, in the Russian premiere of the musical 'Godspell'.
In 1995-6 he conducted a touring production of Joanna MacGregor's arrangement for Unicorn Theatre of Mozart's 'The Magic Flute' in London and subsequently on a UK tour.
After he was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease in 1998 Andrew decided to concentrate solely on composing. He attended a course in composing for Film at Westminster College and wrote the scores for two short films by graduates of the London Film School.
Andrew collaborated with the author Catherine Storr on an opera of her classic children's novel 'Marianne Dreams'. The opera was premiered in a concert performance at the Lilian Baylis Theatre, Sadlers' Wells, London in 2004.
The bicentenary of the Battle of Trafalgar in 2005 was the occasion for two new works: the overture 'Trafalgar 1805', recorded on CD by the Moscow International Symphony Orchestra, conductor Konstantin Krimetz and given its UK premiere in St. Andrew's Hall, Norwich by the Norwich Philharmonic Society, and a lighter work, 'Hooratio!', commissioned by North Walsham Town Council with funds from the National Lottery. 'Trafalgar 1805' was used in August 2005 by BBC Radio 4 as music for Afternoon Theatre.
In 2006 the CD 'Maerchenhaft' was released, including four songs from the Grimm musicals.
Andrew's recent works include a string quartet, 'Quiet Lanes', premiered in August 2007 by the Bingham Quartet at the Happing Festival in East Anglia; two piano preludes Angels and Rain on a September Afternoon, premiered by David Morgan; a wind quintet; 'Thames' for orchestra, and a work for strings, 'Elegy for the fallen', which was a finalist in the 2007 Fauxharmonic Orchestra Adagio Competition, and has been performed by The Israel Chamber Orchestra, the Chicago Chamber Orchestra and the Lancaster Symphony Orchestra. Recent works include a trio for the unusual combination of Flute, Bassoon and Piano (2011) premiered at St. Botolph's church, Trunch, Norfolk and two more preludes for piano: Earth and Sky (2013), premiered by its dedicatee, David Morgan, and The Blue Bay (2014).
Andrew lives in Norfolk, England.

Andrew Lowe Watson