As Associate Composer of the BBC Singers since 2015, I drop in at intervals to their fabled residence, Maida Vale Studios. But with my retirement from this enjoyable position discernable at the end of this season I’ve begun to be more observant of the year’s regular events as they come round. A significant part of my business here has been presiding over composition workshops. Amongst our most regular customers have been student composers from the Royal Northern College. In fact their teacher Adam Gorb told me that he has been bringing parties down from Manchester to do this for well over ten years.
It’s always a pleasure to work with the RNCM group, who (perhaps I am generalising over a long period) always bring a fresh diversity of musical styles, and are very open and receptive to the advice the BBC Singers give them back. In fact for one piece during this week’s workshop I heard an extreme compliment from one of the performers ; “You could perform this music in an actual concert !” Meanwhile, someone has been tidying up the studio (see picture) after all these years. This surely presages the sad day, reportedly in 2022, when the BBC will move out of Maida Vale, and this historic home of musical memories will be no more.