Show pic 2

‘Illusions’ with David Hoyle

September 20, 2015

  Illusions – Philip  Venables & David Hoyle Performed by London Sinfonietta, cond. Andrew Gourlay, sound by Sound Intermedia. Video by Philip Venables. Live performance was two days after the UK General Election 2015, as a post-election “party political broadcast”, at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, London, 9th May 2015. Thanks so Lee Baxter,…

Read more →

Illusions in performance

Illusions – collaboration with David Hoyle

May 11, 2015

I’m delighted to have been able to contribute to the London Sinfonietta‘s Notes to the New Government on Saturday at the Southbank Centre.  David Hoyle and I worked on a in-yer-face piece called Illusions which was based on the message: democracy is an illusion; gender is an illusion.  I made a video piece from a large amount of…

Read more →


May 10, 2015

I’m sorry I haven’t updated this site for a while.  I’ve been running around getting lots of exciting projects in order, and I promise I will post lots about them very soon and get this website back in shape!  Phil x

Royal Opera House logo

Philip to write new opera for Royal Opera House

August 25, 2013

From GSMD Press release: Philip Venables to research and write major work for performance at the ROH Linbury Studio Theatre in 2016. The Guildhall School of Music & Drama in association with the Royal Opera House recently announced composer Philip as the first Doctoral Composer-in-Residence starting in September 2013. This collaboration between the Royal Opera House and the Guildhall…

Read more →


Portrait Concert / 30 June / St Luke’s

May 10, 2013

Fight music The first ever portrait concert of my work will be at LSO St Luke’s in London on 30th June 2013. The concert features five recent pieces from the last few years, performed in the concert by the Ligeti Quartet, Ashot Sarkissjan, The Warehouse Ensemble, Melinda Maxwell, Leigh Melrose, Richard Baker and The London…

Read more →

Beethoven Manuscript

Klaviertrio im Geiste

February 12, 2013

performed by the Phoenix Piano Trio at Oxford Lieder Festival, Holywell Music Room, Oxford, UK. on 20th October 2012. Klaviertrio im Geiste is based on the second movement of Beethoven’s Ghost Trio (Piano Trio No. 5, Op.70/1). If you listen to both pieces side by side you can hear the connections between the second movement…

Read more →


Klaviertrio im Geiste (middle bit)

February 12, 2013

  performed by the Phoenix Piano Trio at Oxford Lieder Festival, Holywell Music Room, Oxford, UK. on 20th October 2012. Klaviertrio im Geiste is based on the second movement of Beethoven’s Ghost Trio (Piano Trio No. 5, Op.70/1). This is the third movement (Scherzo).

James Young / Six Word Operas

Fuck Forever

November 8, 2012

Fuck Forever is an experiment in spoken word, first performed as part of Tête-à-Tête Opera Festival’s Six Word Opera Project. Location: Riverside Studios, London Date: August 2011

Reciprocal Space

Reciprocal Space (video)

October 30, 2012

Exploration of reciprocal space using glass sculpture and sound installation Crystallographer Brian Sutton Glass Sculpture and Video: Shelley James Music: Orã (extract) Philip Venables Performed by: BBC Symphony Orchestra

Revenge of Miguel Cotto

The Revenge of Miguel Cotto (video)

October 29, 2012

A performance piece about a true story of revenge and honour between boxers Miguel Cotto and Antonio Margarito. Music: Philip Venables Text: Stephen J. Fowler Performed by: the London Sinfonietta Location: Village Underground Date: May 2012



July 17, 2012

…almost at a pace that I can’t keep up.  I have never composed so much in so little time in all my life.  It’s very exciting.  The music is so far working out to be very text-led.  The players and singer have to follow the pace and rhythm of spoken text, rather than the more…

Read more →


UNLEASHED cast announced, tickets go on sale

June 27, 2012

We had a loooooooong day of auditions on Friday, but Nick Blackburn, the director of UNLEASHED, and I heard from great singing, saw some great acting, and most of all heard some pretty eye-opening stories.  We’re delighted to say we’ve now got our cast: Kris Belligh will be singing the role of Male 1 and…

Read more →


The Revenge of Miguel Cotto preview

May 30, 2012

The preview version of The Revenge of Miguel Cotto was premiered on 16th May at Village Underground in Shoreditch, London.  What a great evening!  The London Sinfonietta were performing, conducted by Richard Baker, with vocalists Leigh Melrose and Alexander Robin Baker.  I’ll post a video of the performance shortly. The Revenge of Miguel Cotto is…

Read more →


Flipp (audio)

April 22, 2012

Flipp, for two saxophones (2011) by philipvenables Year: 2011 Duration: 3 minutes Orchestration: two of the same saxophones Flipp was first performed on 24th May 2011 at BKA Theater, Berlin, Adrian Tully and Christoph Enzel, as part of the Unerhörte Musik series.

sketches 3

Sketches for The Revenge of Miguel Cotto

March 7, 2012

The Revenge of Miguel Cotto, the work that Steve Fowler and I are working on for the London Sinfonietta Blue Touch Paper project, is going well.  The work is moving at a fast pace now, and I’m having some mentoring sessions with Olga Neuwirth and David Sawer as part of the project. The performance of…

Read more →

New blog-site for the UNLEASHED anti-opera project

February 10, 2012

We’ve just got together the new blog site for the UNLEASHED anti-opera project that I’m doing with director Nick Blackburn.  Check it out here….

Music, Text, Violence

Music, Text and Violence (an interview)

February 10, 2012

A conversation with Theatre Director Nick Blackburn about my compositional approach.  


Selected for Blue Touch Paper

January 10, 2012

I’m delighted to have been selected with poet Steven J Fowler for the London Sinfonietta’s new Blue Touch Paper scheme. We were selected in October for our project that is an immersive, 45-minute-long  semi-staged piece for ensemble, electronics and vocalists, about Boxing.  Steve is a really wonderful, critically-acclaimed and very prolific young British poet who…

Read more →

Contrasts in Space // video: Sebastian Schmidt

Contrasts in Space (video)

December 20, 2011

Contrasts in Space was screened at the British Film Institute on 1st December, alongside the premiere of my new soundtrack for it, featuring tape and live viola. Ensemble Amorpha were performing. Contrasts in Space is a black and white film by Sebastian Schmidt.  Here’s a video of the synced live sound recording from the performance with the…

Read more →


K, prelude to Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet (video)

November 29, 2011

K, a prelude to the Mozart Clarinet Quintet Performed by: Endymion Location: Kings Place Date: September 2010.    

numbers 91 – 95

numbers 91–95 (video)

November 26, 2011

World premiere of Numbers 91-95 Music: Philip Venables Text: Simon Howard Performed by: Ensemble Adapter Location: Casino Baumgarten, Vienna (Wien Modern Festival) Date: 10th November 2011


Shorts Amorpha at the BFI

November 25, 2011

I’m delighted to say I’ve written a short piece for viola and tape (or optional speaking chorus), as a new soundtrack to Sebastian Schmidt’s short film Contrasts in Space.  This will be performed by Ensemble Amorpha at the British Film Institute on 1st December in London, at an event called Shorts Amorpha. Here’s more info…

Read more →

“Signals” feat. “Metamor – phoses after Britten”

October 12, 2011

I just received a copy of the Signals volume of new music for oboe.  It looks great!  It features my Metamorphoses after Britten in it, and I also designed the snazzy front cover!  (not bright pink, this time..) The volume was edited by the amazing Melinda Maxwell, for whom I wrote my Metamorphoses, and John Stringer…

Read more →

Wonderful reviews of numbers 76-80 : tristan und isolde

October 7, 2011

numbers 76-80 : tristan und isolde was performed brilliantly by EXAUDI and Endymion under the direction of James Weeks on Monday 19th September.  I was really delighted, and the Purcell Room at Southbank was pretty busy too. There was a wonderful 4-star review by Guy Dammann in the Guardian the following day.  It said Venables’s text…

Read more →

Contrasts in Space // video: Sebastian Schmidt

Contrasts in Space

October 7, 2011

So – very busy at the moment with a number of big projects that I’ll be telling you about in the next few weeks, hopefully. But this week I’ve been working on a short instrumental + tape piece to accompany this short film by Sebastian Schmidt. Obviously it won’t have that sound on it, but…

Read more →

CONTACT dance-floor up and running!

September 8, 2011

What an exhausting but wonderful week of hard work.  We started on Monday morning, when I got off the plane from Berlin and went straight to Kings Place to start constructing the touch-sensitive dancefloor that I designed specially for the Kings Place Festival 2011. A lot of hammering, measuring, taping, wiring and tweaking.  Here’s a…

Read more →


…dark and violent, and so so gay.

August 26, 2011

Last week’s performance of Fuck Forever was reviewed by “There were some really great little works in among the chaff….. Philip Venables’ Fuck Forever managed to tease out a dark and violent portrait of sexual desire.” Definitely a line I will quote in my biography! Check out the full review here.  

James Young / Six Word Operas

Fuck Forever video

August 26, 2011

Fuck forever from Philip Venables on Vimeo. I’m delighted that my 3-minute Six Word Opera was premiered last week (11th and 12th August) at Riverside Studios in London, as part of the Tête-à-Tête Opera Festival.  It was performed by the wonderful John Savournin (speaker/singer), James Young (piano and MD), Rosalind Acton (cello) and Matthew West…

Read more →


Building the Junk Band

August 4, 2011

Here’s a video from a while ago that I hadn’t posted on this site.  Its Serge Vuille and I building the Junk Band in Kings Place for the Kings Place Festival 2010.  It took us good 5 hours to install in the atrium of the building, but here you can see the process in just…

Read more →