Adopt a Composer

The Adopt a Composer project matches leisure-time choirs, bands, orchestras and ensembles with a composer for a year, leading to a first performance, a recording and a possible radio broadcast.

The composer has the opportunity to get to know a performing group and write a piece especially for them to première, while the group has the chance to contribute to the creation of a new work by some of the UK’s most promising composers. Pieces that are composed are roughly around ten minutes long and are usually written to work around your existing repertoire and schedule. 

Applications for the 2020/21 project will open in spring 2020. If you would like us to contact you when you can apply, get in touch with us.

Current pairings

  • Alex Paxton with Haslingfield Choir (Cambridge)
  • Carmel Smickersgill with Junior LCoM Ensemble Creative (Leeds)
  • Claire Victoria Roberts with Camden Symphony Orchestra (London)
  • Jonathan Brigg with Sussex Folk Orchestra (Sussex)
  • Laura Shipsey with City of Bristol Brass Band (Bristol)
  • Rob Jones with The Edge Chamber Choir (Shropshire)

Rural Scotland project:

  • Aileen Sweeney with Helensburgh Oratoria Choir

Radio 3 broadcasts

Recordings of most of the pieces written for the Adopt a Composer projects were broadcast on BBC Radio 3. You can listen to these pieces below and on our Soundcloud page.

Adopt a Composer Legacy Project

Composers who took part in the 2015/16 project have re-scored their pieces to make them more accessible to groups of other kinds. These new versions are now available for Making Music member groups to download for free and perform.

AaC alumni



Composers Groups
Chloe Knibbs Ex Urbe
James Banner Two Rivers Concert Band
Laura Snowden Chandos Chamber Choir
Nathan James Dearden Swansea Philharmonic Choir
Nicholas Olsen Da Capo Alba
Robert Laidlow Southampton Concert Wind Band
Anna Appleby

Merchant Sinfonia

Ben See Stoneleigh Youth Orchestra
Edmund Hunt The Singers
Esmeralda Conde Ruiz The Fretful Federation Mandolin Orchestra
Max Charles Davies Côr Crymych a'r Cylch
Peter Yarde Martin Bellfolk Handbell Ringers
Gaynor Barradell (Scottish project) Edinburgh Concert Band



Adriano Adewale Horsham Symphony Orchestra
Christopher Schlechte-Bond KEMS Concert Band
Mark Boden Croydon Bach Choir
Martin Humphries London Medical Orchestra
Rosie Clements Spectrum Singers
Shona Mackay Glasgow School of Art Choir
Aran Browning (Scottish project) Strathendrick Singers
Ed Scolding La Nova Singers
Neil Tòmas Smith Thame Chamber Choir and TCC2
Angela Slater Lincoln Ukelele Band
Lee Westwood East London Community Band
Alison Willis Chiltern Youth Chamber Orchestra
Chris Hutchings Jan Modelski Community Orchestra
Ailie Robertson Jubilate Ladies Choir
Anna Braithwaite Quirky Choir
Kirsty Devaney Arden Recorder Orchestra
Mark Carroll Strathaven Choral Society
Sean Doherty Kensington Symphony Orchestra
Michael Betteridge Cobweb Orchestra
Kim Moore Bristol Reggae Orchestra
Mak Murtic Clapham Community Choir
Michael Betteridge Cobweb Orchestra
Jenni Pinnock Quangle Wangle Choir
Chris Roe Cambridge Symphony Orchestra
Amble Skuse Ty Cerdd partnership
Soosan Lolavar Tudor Orchestra
James Wilson Southwark Youth Orchestra
Stephanie Conner Rennaisance Singers
Sarah Lewis Bristol Saxophone Ensemble
Rebecca Dale Music for Everyone
Ella Jarman-Pinto Kew Wind Orchestra 
William Dougherty  The London Chorus 
Bernard Hughes Woking Symphony Orchestra 
Ruta Vitkauskaite Flautissimo
Duncan MacLeod  Llandaff Cathedral Choral Society 
Lauren Redhead Grimsby Philharmonic Society 
Aaron Parker Harmonie Concert Band
Andrew Hall  Essex Symphony Orchestra
Chris Swithinbank King Edward Music Society
Emily Crossland Strathclyde University Chamber Choir
Jessica Curry Musarc
Neil Luck BT Melodians
Paul Fretwell St. Albans Rehearsal Orchestra
Nick Chamberlain Glasgow Lyric Choir
George Holloway Finchley Chamber Orchestra & Finchley Chamber Choir
Simon Katan Sans Pareil Singers
Richard Bullen Midlands Fretted Orchestra
Nina Whiteman Colinton Amateur Orchestral Society
Adam Melvin Yorkshire Saxophone Choir
Amber Priestley St. Hilda’s Festival Chorus 
Margaret Haley  Aire Valley Singers
Elizabeth Winters  Kensington Chamber Orchestra
Graham Ross The Knack Singers
Christopher Hussey Bloomsbury Woodwind Ensemble
Richard Glover Solway Harps
Jordan Hunt Midlands Fretted Orchestra
Fumiko Miyachi Lichfield Sinfonia
Claudia Molitor City of Southampton Orchestra
Robert Percy Lewisham Choral Society
Philip Venables South London Jazz Orchestra
Anthony Bailey Milton Keynes Chorale
James McWilliam Ipswich Choral Society
Ben Oliver Yorkshire Philharmonic Choir
Charlie Piper Lambeth Orchestra
Martin Suckling New Edinburgh Orchestra
Jerry Wigens Hampton Singers
Will May Islington Choral Society
Philip Tebbs Hardynge Choir
Simon Lesley North Staffs Symphony Orchestra
Yumi Hara Cawkwell Chantage
Owen Bourne Fulham Symphony Orchestra
Chris Long City of Birmingham Choir
John Reeman Todmorden Orchestra 
Edmund Jolliffe Kensington Chamber Orchestra  
Ed Bennett The Sheffield Chamber Orchestra
Anna Meredith MilnGavie Young Singers
Jonathan Girling Glebe Singers   
Mark Bowden Thames Voyces  
Tazul Tajuddin Hertford Symphony Orchestra
Sophie Viney London Oriana Choir
Jonathan Pitkin St. Albans High School Chamber Orchestra
Nicholas Simpson Sale Choral Society
Chris Beardsley Settle Orchestral Society
Liz Johnson Bournville Children’s Choir
Nick Brown The Phoenix Singers of Shrewsbury 
Tarik O’Regan Leighton Buzzard Festival Singers  
Tim Coker Finchley Chamber Choir
Arlene Sierra Aolian Singers  
Naomi Waltham-Smith Lea Singers
Christine McCombe University of Strathclyde Music Society 
Iain Matheson Meadows Chamber Orchestra
Rachel Leach Leicester Symphony Orchestra
Graham Sheen Westmorland Youth Orchestra
Tom Ingoldsby the EMG Orchestra


Who supports the project?

The project is funded by the PRS Foundation, Philip and Dorothy Green Trust and Creative Scotland, and run by Making Music in association with Sound and Music.

The PRS Foundation is the largest independent funder for new music in the UK. The foundation provides all the financial backing for the Adopt a Composer scheme.

Please note that groups submitting an application to the Adopt a Composer scheme will not be eligible to apply in the same year to any other scheme operated by The PRS Foundation.

Sound and Music is the national organisation for new music. Its work includes composer and artist development, partnerships with a range of organisations, audience development, touring, information and advice, network building, and education. 

Creative Scotland enables people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life.