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Introducing composer Benedict Tanner

Fullscore Publishing is delighted to distribute a brand new setting by Benedict Tanner of What Child Is This?, written in the style of a Bach chorale. Hear it beautifully sung by the Temple Consort - click on the image above, or here (opens a YouTube window).

Benedict Tanner recently won runner-up prize in the Choir Schools' Association Composition Competition (Under 14 category) with his setting of Those who wait for the Lord (also distributed by Fullscore Publishing). A former chorister at St Paul's Cathedral in London, Benedict is now a music scholar at Rugby School, where he studies violin, viola, piano and organ. He says: “I enjoyed my time at St Paul’s, and was fortunate to sing for the Queen’s 90th Birthday service and to tour America with St Paul's Cathedral Choir. I loved singing services every day in the Cathedral, and learnt so much from wonderful musicians such as Andrew Carwood, Simon Johnson, William Fox, and James Orford. I sang a broad repertoire of music from Byrd to Britten, and particularly enjoyed singing music that was specially written for the choir.

It was music like Behold Now Praise The Lord, by Matthew Martin, which inspired me to write music of my own. I have composed a variety of different kinds of music, such as a setting of the Christmas text, What Child Is This?, and writing music underneath a scene from Wallace and Gromit. I particularly enjoy putting music to text, and it was the opportunity to do this that attracted me to this competition. I’m very grateful to my two academic music teachers over the past couple of years for encouraging me to compose: Mark Kennedy at St Paul’s Cathedral School and Tori Brandwood at Rugby School. What Child is This? was written as a class music assignment set by Mr Kennedy in December 2019. I have ambitions to be a musician when I am older, and even though I do not know what kind I will be, I suspect that it will involve composition and organ playing.”

Benedict comes from a very musical family: his father, Richard Tanner, was Organist and Director of Music at Blackburn Cathedral from 1998 to 2011, and is now Director of Music at Rugby School, one of the UK's most prestigious and historic independent schools. His mother, Philippa Hyde, is a professional soprano, working internationally.

The lyrics to What Child Is This? are by William Chatterton Dix, who also wrote As with gladness men of old - a delightful pair of carols, both recently published by Fullscore Publishing in new settings. We are delighted to be able to distribute Benedict Tanner's music and we welcome him as the first of our new, young composers.

Also from Fullscore Publishing and composed by Benedict Tanner, a short anthem: Those who wait for the Lord.

Read more about the annual CSA Composition Competition (supported by the David Willcocks Trust) here.


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