David Vickerman Bedford (born August 4, 1937) is a British composer David Vickerman Bedford (born August 4, 1937) is a British composer and musician. He has worked in popular music as well as in the classical world.
David Bedford was born in London in 1937 of a musical family, (his grandmother was the composer Liza Lehmann, and his mother, Lesley Duff, was a member of the English Opera Group just after the war and was thus involved in several Britten premières).
He began composing at the age of seven and went on to study at the Royal Academy of Music with Lennox Berkeley. A grant awarded by the RAM in 1961 enabled him to study with Luigi Nono in Venice.
In the late 60s he played keyboards with Kevin Ayers' cult band 'The Whole World', which led to numerous collaborations with musicians from the rock world, most notably in arrangements for Mike Oldfield, Elvis Costello, Frankie goes to Hollywood, Roy Harper, Propaganda, China Crisis, Enya, Billy Bragg and many more.
He has also done orchestrations for the films 'The Killing Fields', 'Supergrass', 'Absolute Beginners', 'Meeting Venus', 'Orlando', and was Choral Coordinator for 'The Mission'. He has written original music for several of the Hammer House of Mystery and Suspense TV series.
Another aspect of Bedford's work is composing for educational purposes - he was appointed Youth Music Director of the English Sinfonia in 1986, and Composer in Association in 1994. His music in this genre ranges from small pieces for pupils with little or no musical knowledge, to 7 school operas. He is in frequent demand for creative workshops and composition projects throughout the U.K. and overseas. His innovative approach has led to such
works as 'Seascapes' (1986) and 'Frameworks' (1989), in which students are encouraged to create their own music in the context of a public concert with a professional orchestra - these two pieces have so far involved over 4000
students. His largest major educational piece is 'Stories from the Dreamtime', (1991) for 40 deaf children and symphony orchestra.
For over 30 years he has received commissions from major orchestras, festivals, ensembles and soloists, including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, English
Sinfonia, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, John Alldis Choir, Singcircle, Electric Phoenix, Endymion Ensemble, Sir Peter Pears, Jane's Minstrels, BASBWE, The Composers Ensemble, The Aldeburgh Festival, Harrogate Festival, Spitalfields Festival, Chelmsford Festival, Huddersfield Festival, Kings Lynn Festival, Norfolk and Norwich Festival and many BBC commissions including 4 for the Proms.
His most recent projects include, 'A Charm of Joy', a commission for choir and strings for the Norfolk and Norwich Festival 1996, where he was composer in residence; a major choral/orchestral commission, 'A Charm of Blessings', for the Spitalfields Festival 1997, and a string quartet commissioned by the Norfolk and Norwich Music Club for the Schidlof Quartet to perform in their 1998 season.
He has recently completed an oboe concerto commissioned by the John Lewis Partnership for Nick Daniel for 10 performances in October 1998. Future projects include a major commission from the BBC Symphony Orchestra for a Festival Hall performance in April 1999 as part of the BBC's Sounding the Century series. This will be followed by a commission from the Academy of Ancient Music for a piece for orchestra. This is part of their new policy of commissioning new pieces and is the 2nd in the series which was initiated with a commission from John Tavener.
COMPOSERS ENSEMBLE 'SONGBOOK' (1991)
containing 'Even Now' plus songs by Weir, Matthews, Bainbridge, Nyman, Skempton etc.
STAR CLUSTERS, NEBULAE AND PLACES IN DEVON/THE SONG OF THE WHITE HORSE (1981, CD release 1992, 1999)
containing 'Star Clusters' plus 'The Song of the White Horse'
NURSE'S SONG WITH ELEPHANTS (1972, CD release 1993)
containing, 'Nurse's Song with Elephant', 'It's Easier than It Looks', 'Some Bright Stars for Queen's College', 'Trona', 'Sad and Lonely Faces'
GREAT EQUATORIAL (1994)
David Bedford (keyboards)
FIRST AND FOREMOST (THE APOLLO SAXOPHONE QUARTET 1994)
containing 'Fridiof Kennings', plus works by Corea, Nyman and Gregory
ARGO 443 903-2
THE RIME OF THE ANCIENT MARINER (1975 CD release 1994)
Mike Oldfield, Robert Powell (narrator), David Bedford (keyboards)
THE ODYSSEY (1976, CD release 1994)
David Bedford (keyboards), Mike Oldfield (guitar), The Queen's College Choir
VARIATIONS ON A RHYTHM OF MIKE OLDFIELD (1995)
The Electric Candle Percussion Ensemble
STAR'S END (1974, CD release 1997)
Mike Oldfield, Chris Cutler, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra/Vernon Handley
INSTRUCTIONS FOR ANGELS (1997 CD release 1997)
David Bedford, Mike Ratledge (keyboards), Mike Oldfield (guitar)
RIGEL 9 (1985 CD release 1997)
Ursula Le Guin (words), Enn Reitel, Gerard Kenny, Sarah Duthie, Lorin Stewart, Strawberry Switchblade (voices), Clem Clempson, Mark Bedford (guitars), Daniel Woodgate (drums), Pete King (saxophone), Adrian Levine, Bill Benham, Belinda Bunt (violins), David Bedford (keyboards), The County of Avon Symphonic Wind Band
ON FIRE (SIMON HARAM, SAXOPHONE, 1997)
contains 'Backings' for soprano saxophone and tape, plus works by Heath, Muldowney, Carpenter and Gregory
Black Box 5-031033-970126
THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS (1997)
contains 'Godrestya' plus tracks by Kitaro, Keith Emerson, Rick Wakeman and others
ENGLISH CHORAL MUSIC (1998)
contains 'The Golden Wine is Drunk', plus music by Holst, Britten and Howells. The Netherlands Chamber Choir/John Alldis
Globe GLO 5170
RECORDER CONCERTO (CD Single, 1998)
Piers Adams, BBCSO/Brabbins