Anna Appleby (born in Newcastle upon Tyne, 1993) is a Manchester-based composer. Her music often wrestles with socio-political and spiritual themes. She has written numerous orchestral, operatic, chamber, choral, vocal, electronic and dance works for a wide variety of professional and community ensembles. She has a particular interest in writing for the stage, and has drawn inspiration from choreographers in the way she works, building her pieces on the strengths and personalities of each ensemble she writes for. Collaboration is at the heart of her creative practice, and she is always keen to meet artists and ensembles who enjoy open conversation and practical research. Recent premieres include a new opera, Drought, with the BBC Philharmonic.
"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"
"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"