Laurence Crane was born in Oxford in 1961 and studied composition with Peter Nelson and Nigel Osborne at Nottingham University. He lives and works in London. His music is mainly written for the concert hall, although his list of works includes pieces written for film, radio, theatre, dance and installation.
He is closely associated with the British ensemble Apartment House, who have to date given around forty performances of his works - two were written especially for the ensemble, Riis and John White in Berlin, the latter commissioned in 2003 by the MaerzMusik Festival in Berlin. Piano music has been an important feature of his work and pianists who have performed his solo piano pieces include Michael Finnissy, Thalia Myers, Jonathan Powell, Sarah Nicolls, Andrew Zolinsky and John McAlpine. Two of his piano pieces, Chorale for Howard Skempton and Postlude, were commissioned by the Associated Board for publication in the Spectrum series.
The Dutch group Orkest de ereprijs commissioned Movement for Ensemble, premiered in Amsterdam at the 2002 Gaudeamus International Music Week. Following this performance the Ives Ensemble commissioned Movement for 10 Musicians, a new version of the earlier work, for collaboration with Rotterdam Dance Works, which toured the Netherlands in the spring of 2004.
Crane has composed two further works for Dutch musicians in 2006; Ullrich 1 and 2 for Orkest de Volharding and West Sussex Folk Material for the Netherlands Radio Chamber Orchestra. In 2007 he composed a set of pieces for the Vigani’s Cabinet project, a unique three-year programme of new commissions for Queens’ College Cambridge.
My Second Chamber Symphony - which carries the subtitle ’The Australian’- is a single movement of around 18 minutes duration and is scored for 13 players. As is quite frequent in my work, the starting point for the composition were a couple of fragments from previous pieces; small sequences of chords, which are taken on a walk and viewed from a different angle - or number of angles - in this new piece. These fragments come from two works completed in 2014; Pieces About Art, written for EXAUDI Vocal Ensemble and Gli Anni Prog, composed for the Italian Flautist Manuel Zurria.
Commissioned by London Sinfonietta it received its UK premiere by the London Sinfonietta conducted by Garry Walker, St John’s Smith Square, London, 10 October 2015.