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Meet composer Matthew Beardsworth

In this series, we present our new composers. We are proud to introduce Matthew Beardsworth.

Please tell us about yourself and what you do.

I am a 19-year-old composer living on the North Shore of Auckland. Currently, I play the piano, violin, viola, double bass, guitar, ukulele, and percussion, and have been the concertmaster of the North Shore Youth Orchestra under David Kay for the past 4 years.

Some of the notable awards I have received are the 2017 AIMES Emerging Talent Award for Music; the 2017 APO Secondary School Composition Competition; the 2017 Play It Strange Who Loves Who Award; and the SMCO-SOUNZ Composer Project 2017.

My most memorable concert experiences are hearing my work "Prelude in D Minor" performed by the St Matthew's Chamber Orchestra in the magnificent St Matthew's Church in Auckland City, and the Auckland Symphony Orchestra performing live on the Auckland waterfront on Auckland Anniversary Weekend.

Outside of writing music my interests include mainstream cinema and film scores - my favourite film is How To Train Your Dragon scored by John Powell.

Please choose 2-3 of your works/albums and tell us about them.

Sintel is a rescore of the Blender Open Source animated film of the same name, inspired by the works of John Williams. With grand orchestrations and a strong use of leitmotif, it emotionally complements the story of a woman searching for her lost pet dragon. The Auckland Symphony Orchestra will perform a concert suite at their 2019 Film Concerts.

If you would like to follow the score, video link can be found here.

Prelude in D Minor is an original composition for small orchestra. This was my first conscious attempt at writing outside rigid 8-bar phrases, instead using a simple motif to tie the whole composition together. It has been performed twice by the St Matthew's Chamber Orchestra.

'March in E Minor' is a light military-style piece, originally written for youth orchestra but rearranged for pit orchestra.

What are you working on at the moment?

Currently, I am working (on and off) on several large orchestral pieces stylistically inspired by film scores, as well as a series of smaller ensemble pieces inspired by my various interests. The one that springs to mind first is a chamber orchestra piece in 5/4 time about the last steam locomotive to be built in the UK - the "Evening Star".

How can people contact you?

Tumblr blog 
YouTube channel

Would you like to tell us anything else?

I am on the Autism spectrum, and throughout my life, I have found music to be a calming and focusing tool, an aide to emotional understanding and communication, and an extraordinary creative outlet.


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