On Macbeth (Glyndebourne/ROH)

Elegantly creepy, defiantly cool” - Bachtrack

“the orchestral writing is crisp and incisive, conjuring up with imagination the successive atmospheres required for the tragedy’s trajectory.” The Guardian


Handspun, commissioned by ROH2 and premiered at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden as part of Exposure Dance, Feb 2012.

Luke Styles is a composer prolific in opera, the theatre and instrumental music. Over the last four years Luke’s operas including Macbeth and Tycho’s Dream have been performed at Glyndebourne, the Royal Opera House Covent Garden and the Vault Festival. These operas have explored diverse worlds including cabaret, war and science fiction, and allowed him to delve into sensual lyricism, humour, chaos and darkness in his music.

Luke has created dance works for the New Music Biennial (performed at the 2014 Commonwealth Games) and circus works together with long time collaborator, aerialist Ilona Jantti. These works display Luke’s belief in pushing new music into areas where it is not usually encountered. Handspun, a contemporary circus work, continues to tour throughout Europe.

In 2014 Luke was signed by IMG Artists following his time as the first Glyndebourne Young Composer in Residence (2011-2014). Luke continued his creative partnerships with organisations in 2015 as composer in residence at the Foundling Museum, the first composer to occupy the position since Handel.

Collaborations are central to Luke’s work and this has led to new works with conductors and soloists Vladimir Jurowski and David Pyatt and ensembles such as the London Sinfonietta and the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

Luke is a former student of Wolfgang Rihm, George Benjamin and Detlev Muller-Siemens. Read more HERE.


Songs and Opera

2017! Happy New Year, slightly belated, but 2017 has begun and the composing is in full swing.

The last couple of months of 2016 and the beginning of 2017 has seen me focusing on a project for the 2017 Aldeburgh Festival and a new opera for Opera Philadelphia in 2021. The Aldeburgh Festival project is nearly at it’s conclusion, and I had the pleasure of going to Snape last week to give a masterclass to 6 composition students from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, on composing for the voice as part of the project. The new work is a set of songs and I have one more to write before the set of 12 is complete. Well actually I have written an extra 3 songs so Aldeburgh Music (now Snape Maltings) is getting three free songs, what a bargain! This last song I have to write is all about space. The text is being written by writer Alan McKendrick and I’m sure his wild imagination will produce something full of aliens and inter-galactic madness.

I have drafted two more scenes of the opera for 2021 and these are going to be tested out this coming week with a handful of musicians and singers, from the early music ensemble La Nuova Musica. This kind of development work is a great way to establish the dramatic and sonic world of an opera. I feel that once this is done for the first quarter or first third of an opera, and the material is thoroughly explored, pulled apart and experimented with, all collaborators (composer, librettist, director, conductor, singers etc) can then feel a very enhanced level of confidence in creating the rest of the work. Somehow cracking the beginning of an opera and seeing lots of different possibilities within the material enriches the composition of the rest of the work in a way that is not always foreseeable when the work is drafted in full before a first workshop.

After these workshops next week I will be downing tools on this commission (partly because the premiere is about 5 years away) and move onto a couple of new projects, another opera, a concerto and another song cycle.

I recently did an interview for M-Magazine where I went into detail about some of this work. It can be access online via this link:

Purchase: The Girls Who Wished to Marry the Stars from NMC, Here.

Interminable Prelude(2006). Cello Trio

Macbeth premiered in 2015 at Glyndebourne and the Royal Opera House Covent Garden.

To get in touch please contact my agent at IMG. Bridget Canniere.