Anna Appleby (born in Newcastle upon Tyne) is a Manchester-based composer and songwriter. Her contemporary classical and electroacoustic work has been performed all over the world and she continues to compose for orchestras, opera companies, choreographers, new music ensembles, soloists and choirs. She also has a performance alter-ego called Norrisette. Recent premieres include an opera, Drought, for the BBC Philharmonic and an award-winning collaborative youth opera for Glyndebourne, Pay the Piper.

"an exceptionally strong collaboration between composer and choreographer that began in the earliest stages of musical composition, resulting in a particularly satisfying close-knit work"



"you can practically feel the electricity in the air in this soundtrack"


"Anna's work also reaches far outside the realms of the concert hall, as in this dreamy electronic work for dance"



"the lyrical pyrotechnics of Appleby's sound score"



"dramatic flair even with the small forces involved"



"a new piece of art which emulates and empathises with current social and political worries"



"fresh and gripping writing"


"Unusually in this era of specialisation, Anna is also an accomplished visual artist and writer"



"Anna Appleby’s music has its own shape. Inspired by choreography, the Manchester-based composer’s work moves in its own, peculiar way, rising and falling with movements of the stage. With an emphasis on collaboration, Appleby writes music specific to her performer, interested in writing arrangements that play to their strengths. Through this open approach to collaboration, Appleby has ended up swinging through musical styles, writing music for dance troupes, children and amateur choirs. She’s written fluid, spontaneous pieces for chamber groups, traditional verses for choir, and fully-blown orchestral works for ensemble. Beyond this body of work lies a never-ending trail of experimental music and wayward pop songs, formats that push beyond the limits of the concert hall – all the while maintaining the breathless pace of her compositions."


"an excellent addition to the repertoire of adventurous saxophonists"

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Website © Anna Appleby 2023. Images © Merchant Sinfonia and Alex Gascoine by Ian Watson, choreographer Carolyn Bolton by Roberto Cinconze, Citizens of Nowhere (with choreographer Dane Hurst and dancers Liam Giacuzzo, Alice Laidler, Eleanor Stevenson and Zunnur Sazali) by Pari Naderi and Claire Shovelton, Anna Appleby by Mike Plunkett, Lore Lixenberg and Gweneth Ann Rand by Claire Shovelton and designer Sarah Booth, The Sunday Boys by Guðbjörg Ágústsdóttir, conductor Tom Goff by Anna Appleby, Citizens of Nowhere (with Ann Wilkes, Emma Wheeler and Helen Lacey) by Claire Shovelton.