Michael Berkeley CBE, Composer and Broadcaster, will be joining Professor Henrietta Bowden-Jones OBE, RSM Psychiatry Section President, for a conversation about his career in music, his process for composing exquisite pieces of music, and how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the orchestral scene.
Michael was born in 1948, the eldest son of Sir Lennox Berkeley and a godson of Benjamin Britten. He was a chorister at Westminster Cathedral before going on to study at the Royal Academy of Music. He later studied under Richard Rodney Bennett and in 1977 won the Guinness Prize for Composition, his first of many accolades.
Michael has worked as Composer in Association for the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and was Artistic Director of the Cheltenham International Festival of Music 1995–2005. Premieres of his works have been given by ensembles such as the London Symphony Orchestra and the Carducci Quartet. Major commissions include an anthem for the enthronement of the Archbishop of Canterbury in 2013.
Michael has presented one of BBC Radio 3’s most popular and successful programmes, ‘Private Passions’, for over 20 years. The programme has included an extraordinary list of guests, ranging from Isaiah Berlin to Stewart Copeland, the drummer of the Police, to the Archbishop of Canterbury and Stephen Fry.
He was appointed a CBE in 2012 for services to music in the Queen's Birthday Honours, and in 2013 was made a non-party political member of the House of Lords.
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