George Benjamin

George Benjamin DR

George Benjamin


George Benjamin was born in 1960 and began composing at the age of seven. He initially studied at Paris Conservatoire with Messiaen, and later with Alexander Goehr at King's College, Cambridge. When Benjamin was only 20 years old, Ringed by the Flat Horizon was played at the BBC Proms by the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Mark Elder. The London Sinfonietta under Simon Rattle, premiered At First Light two years later.

Benjamin conducted the world premiere Picture a day like this at the Aix-en-Provence opera festival in July 2023, to great cricital acclaim. As with his previous three operatic scores, the text was written by playwright Martin Crimp. Into the Little Hill, was commissioned by the 2006 Festival d'Automne in Paris. Written on Skin (Aix, 2012) and Lessons in Love and Violence (Royal Opera House, 2018), both large-scale works, have both been widely performed in opera houses and concert halls across the world.

Over many years Benjamin has developed a particularly close association with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. They have played under his baton for the premiere performances of his Concerto for Orchestra at the 2021 BBC Proms as well as Written on Skin and Picture a day like this. Benjamin also has a strong relationship with the Ensemble Modern, with whom he will be touring this season to major venues including London, Berlin and Amsterdam. During 2023/24 he will also conduct concert performances of his operas with the Orchestre de Paris and Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, and return to both the Concertgebouw and Cleveland Orchestras.

Since 2001 Benjamin has been the Henry Purcell Professor of Composition at King‘s College London. His works are published by Faber Music and are recorded on Nimbus Records. He is a Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and was knighted in the 2017 Birthday Honours. In 2019 he was given the Golden Lion Award from the Venice Biennale, and he received the Grand Prix artistique from the Del Duca Foundation at the Institut de France in 2022, and most recently Benjamin has been made the 50th laureate of the Ernst von Siemens Music Prize.

Read more about George Benjamin on his website