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The University of Southampton
MusicPart of Humanities

CoMA Contemporary Music Summer School

Published: 16 May 2016
Michael Finnissy, Professor of Music at the University of Southampton

High Melton, Doncaster, Yorkshire 7-13 August 2016


This year’s CoMA Summer School celebrates the life and work of Michael Finnissy, Professor of Music at the University of Southampton. Widely recognised as one of the most significant and influential composers of his generation, Michael, now in his 70th year, is a life-long advocate of amateur musicianship and a dedicated supporter of CoMA and the late starters movement. Accordingly, at the heart of Summer School will be a project, directed by James Weeks, involving all participants – composers and performers, teachers and students alike – working together using folk materials sourced from around the globe, to create a MusicWorld for Michael Finnissy, designed to transform the Summer School site into an abundant musical ecosystem – a cheek-by-jowl final ‘circus’ performance in the manner of John Cage.

Scheduled around this core project will be a varied programme of options for composers, singers, pianists, and other instrumentalists, as well as dedicated string orchestras, contemporary music ensembles, creative opera and music theatre. At the heart of the composition course will be Michael’s Emperor’s New Clothes and other stories, offering a week of imagination and exploration, at the end of which, participants’ pieces will be performed by Michael in a recorded concert.

This year’s tutors will be James Weeks, Michael Finnissy, Lore Lixenberg, Janet Oates, Gregory Rose, Darragh Morgan, Adi Tal and Mary Dullea and Clare Simmonds plus three talks by Judith Weir, Master of the Queen’s Music. The concert programme features the Fidelio Trio, the re-launch of the fabled IXION Ensemble and much, much more, including one of Michael Finnissy’s utterly unique cabaret concerts.

For full details and booking information, see Student bursaries are available.

In addition, there is a Call for Pieces for Partsongs, open to all composers. Details at



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