Nicola LeFanu has composed around one hundred works for a variety of mediums. Her music is published by Edition Peters and by Novello and has been widely played, broadcast and recorded. She has composed eight operas, which have been staged in UK, Ireland and USA.
She was born in England in 1947 to Irish parents; her mother was the composer Elizabeth Maconchy. LeFanu studied at Oxford, RCM and Harvard. She is active in many aspects of the musical profession and was Professor of Music at University of York, 1994-2008.
In April 2017 she celebrated her seventieth birthday, and was BBC Radio 3 'Composer of the Week'. 2017 also saw premieres of five new works, including 'The Crimson Bird' (Commissioned by the RPS for BBCSO with Rachel Nicholls, soprano). Her cantata 'St Hilda of Whitby', to a text by Wendy Cope, was premiered in Oxford in February 2018. Recent music includes pieces for solo violin, for solo piano, two choral works and 'The Swan' for baritone and chamber ensemble.
In 2020, a CD with four of her major orchestral pieces will be released by NMC, supported by a grant from the PRSF. It features the RTE NSO and the BBC SO. In 2021 a new quintet for strings will be premiered by the Sacconi quartet and a work for baritone and chamber orchestra will be premiered by the Welsh Chamber Orchestra.