Introduction

Andrew Cusworth MA, MMus, PhD, FRSA, is a composer and musician who is particularly well known for his choral music and his work with choirs. As well as being performed and broadcast around the globe, his music has been published and recorded, and has received recognition in international competitions.

Media

Biography

Raised in Wales, Andrew learned the 'cello, piano, and organ, began composing at the age of fourteen, and conducting at fifteen. He read music at Cambridge, where he was an organ scholar at Magdalene College. After a few years working as an organist and private music tutor, he continued to develop his skills as a conductor and composer during his masters degree in choral studies, also at Cambridge, where he studied with Stephen Layton, Stephen Cleobury, Andrew Nethsingha, Jeremy Begbie, and others.

In 2010, he won the inaugural New music for St Paul's Cathedral composition competition, which provided him with the impetus to continue writing. Since then, he has been commissioned by internationally renowned ensembles and soloists, including the Choir of Salisbury Cathedral, John Turner, and Calmus Ensemble, as well as continuing to help to realise the musical aspirations of a wide range of amateur choirs and ensembles through writing that is both flexible and effective. His music has been published by Novello and Curiad, and recorded and performed by artists ranging from community music choirs to internationally renowned concert soloists, and including Kantos, Concanenda, John Turner, the BBC Singers, and Calmus Ensemble.

Alongside his activities as a composer and conductor, Andrew's musical work includes teaching voice, piano, cello and theory, and continuing to work with choirs. He is director of Côr Dinas, the women's choir of the London Welsh.

Separately, Andrew has a career as an academic, and works at the University of Oxford (currently in a non-academic capactity), having received his PhD in music and digital humanities from the Open University in 2016. Please see his academic profile for further information.

Selected works

Choral

y Ganolfan, SATB, String Quartet, for Canolfan y Celfyddydau Aberystwyth, 2021

all our numbered lives, SATBarB, for Calmus Ensemble, 2021

yn un rhith - a choir still, SATB, for Côr ABC and Côr Dinas, 2020

Tollite portas, SATB, for Oxford Mystery Cycle, 2019

Duo seraphim, SSSSSSSAATTBB, 2018, unperformed

Alleluia II, SATB, for Côr ABC, 2017

Gosod fi megis sêl, SSAATB, for Côr ABC, 2017

Duo seraphim, SSSSSSSAATTBB, 2018, unperformed

Gosber, SATB, for Côr ABC, 2014 (published by Curiad)

Alleluia, SS, for Concandenda, 2014

Returning we hear larks, SSAATTBB, for Khoros, 2014

Iesu rex admirabilis, SAB, 2014

Of a rose synge we, SSAATTBB, for Concanenda, 2013

Composed upon Westminster Bridge, SSAATTBB, for Concanenda, 2013

My soul waits, SSAATTBB, 2012, unperformed

i carry your heart with me, SAB, for Edna Greenhalgh and Keith Clarke, 2012

Ave maris stella, SS, Organ, for Choir and Organ and Salisbury Cathedral, 2011

Adam lay ibownden, SAB, 2011 (Published by Novello)

Give ear, O ye heavens, SSAATTBB, 2011

Drop down, ye heavens, SAATB, 2010

There is no rose, SAATB, for Rhinegold Singers, 2010 (Published by Novello)

Factum est silentium, SSAATTBB, Organ, for St Paul's Cathedral, 2010

On music, SATB, alto, violin, violin, for Griffon Choir, 2009

Chamber

Llyn Cau, Soprano, Recorder, Harp, Piano, for John Turner, in memory of Ian Parrott, 2013

From Castle Hill, Recorder, String quartet, for John Turner, 2009

Song

Never doubt, alto or tenor, piano, 2013

Phases of desolation, high voice, piano, 2005

Profile, publications, and discography

Awards

Classical Music Digital Awards 2020, Highly Commended, yn un rhith project

King James Bible Awards, 2011, shortlisted,Give ear, O ye heavens

New Music for St Paul's Cathedral Composition Competition, winner, Factum est silentium

Composition discography

all our numbered lives on 41 Statements zur Coronazeit, Calmus Ensemble, 2021

Of a rose synge we on The Silver Stars at Play, Kantos, Ellie Slorach, 2017

From Castle Hill on The Nostalgic Recorder, John Turner, Manchester Camerata, 2015

Composed upon Westminster Bridge on Bright Shadows, Concanenda, Xann Schwinn, 2013

There is no rose on Bright Shadows, Concanenda, Xann Schwinn, 2013

Drop down, ye heavens on Bright Shadows, Concanenda, Xann Schwinn, 2013

There is no rose on Noel! 3, RSVP Singers, David Hill, 2012

Composition filmography

y Ganolfan, Côr ABC et al., 2021

all our numbered lives, Calmus Ensemble, 2021

Of a rose synge we, Kantos, 2020

yn un rhith, Côr ABC and Côr Dinas, 2020

Press, interviews, &c.

Choir chat podcast, October 2017

New music in Choir and Organ, March 2012

King James Bible Awards on The Choir, BBC Radio 3, June 2011

Recent commissions

y Ganolfan, Canolfan y Celfyddydau, Aberystwyth

all our numbered lives, Calmus Ensemble

Tollite portas, St Edmund Hall Choir

Gosod fi megis sêl, Côr ABC

Cofio, Côr Dyfed Choir

Reviews & testimonials

There are many little gems, among them Andrew Cusworth's Of a rose synge we - Robert Beale in Manchester Classical Music about Of a rose synge we

An excellent example of a responsible, learned composer whose work is at once of our own time and of the great continuum of composers. - Kevin O'Brien, D.M.A.

Everything about it suggests inner joy and ecstacy. - 5:4 about Of a rose synge we

The whole piece is well paced and telling use is made of rests and silences which would suit a generous acoustic. Most effective. - Alan Spedding in Organist's review about There is no rose

An entirely engaging work. - Andrew Mayes in The Recorder Magazine about From Castle Hill

This is a piece whose effect greatly exceeds its simple means and it would be welcome in any serious carol service. - Jeremy Summerly in Choir & Organ about There is no rose

Spicy dissonances, lyrical melodies, baleful phrases. Cusworth makes highly effective use of his four stringed instruments as well as challenging his soloist. - Paul Conway in Music Web International about From Castle Hill

Andrew Cusworth's Of a rose synge we has a ravishing Tavener-like simplicity. - Christian Morris in Composition today about Of a rose synge we

Contact

If you are interested in any aspect of Andrew's work, would like to commission a piece, get hold of copies, or ask him to take a workshop with your choir, please do get in touch with him at andrewdjcusworth@gmail.com

He is also, occasionally, a twitter user; even more occasionally, he writes a blog post.