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Roger Marsh

Born: 1949

Nationality: British

Publisher: Novello & Co

Photo © Mick Lynch

Roger Marsh was born in 1949. He studied composition first in London with Ian Kellam, and later at York University with Bernard Rands. He spent two years in California on a Harkness Fellowship (1976-78) and then lectured in Music at Keele University until 1988 when he returned to York University. In the autumn of 1993 he was visiting composer at Harvard University. On his return to the UK he co-founded (with his wife, the singer Anna Myatt) the contemporary music ensemble Black Hair, which has become well known for its unusual presentations of new music and music theatre. He is currently Professor of Music at the University of York.

Roger Marsh has written music for all genres: orchestra, small and large chamber groups, and many works for voices, often with a theatrical edge. One of the most popular of Marsh’s vocal works is the song Black Hair, which exists in two versions – for voice and five instruments and for voice and piano. Typical of Marsh’s work, it tells a story – in this case a Japanese ghost story form Hearn’s collection ‘Kwaidan’ – simply, directly, and in a haunting and finally chilling manner.
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