Philharmonia Orchestra

Philharmonia Orchestra

Led by its Principal Conductor & Artistic Advisor Esa-Pekka Salonen, the Philharmonia has a pioneering approach to the role of the modern-day symphony orchestra, reaching new audiences and participants through audience development, digital technology and learning and participation programmes. Based in London, but with residencies in cities throughout England and a thriving international touring programme and global digital reach, the Philharmonia engages with a world-wide audience.

Paterson, Geoffrey


Geoffrey Paterson studied at Cambridge University and the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama: he took composition lessons with Alexander Goehr, participated in conducting masterclasses with Pierre Boulez and trained as a repetiteur at the National Opera Studio. He won First Prize at the 2009 Leeds Conductors Competition, also winning the audience prize.

He made his debut at Opera North conducting La bohème, and works regularly at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, where he was a member of the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme, assisting conductors including Antonio Pappano, Mark Elder, Andris Nelsons and Daniele Gatti.  Operas conducted for the ROH include Massenet’s Le Portrait de Manon, Julian Grant’s Hot House, Julian Philips’ How the Whale Became and scenes from Britten’s Death in Venice. Other recent operatic work includes George Benjamin’s Into the Little Hill (Hamburg Symphony Orchestra), Julian Philips’ Followers (Glyndebourne) and David Bruce’s The Firework-Maker’s Daughter (The Opera Group). He was invited to join the music staff of the 2013 Bayreuth Festival for Der Ring des Nibelungen and return in 2014.

His recent concert work includes the Manchester Camerata’s New Year’s Gala, several concerts with the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra and Stockhausen’s Gruppen with the London Sinfonietta.

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Philharmonia Orchestra
Geoffrey Paterson


The Philharmonia Composers’ Academy, presented in partnership with the Royal Philharmonic Society and allied to the Orchestra’s prestigious Music of Today contemporary music series, annually offers the opportunity for three talented emerging composers to write an original chamber work for a Philharmonia Ensemble.

Their new works are premiered by an ensemble of Philharmonia musicians at a Music of Today concert at the Royal Festival Hall prior to a full Philharmonia Orchestra concert.

In addition to this high-profi le performance, the composers are guided through the writing process by Music of Today Artistic Director Unsuk Chin, as well as benefitting from specially curated seminars, masterclasses, instrument exploration sessions and a ‘works in  progress’ workshop. From 2017 a recording and release on the NMC Recordings label has been included, enabling the works to have an international platform via online stores and streaming platforms.

Chia-Ying Lin Intermezzo to the Minotaur was inspired by Picasso's artwork Le Minotaure (1928), the piece influenced by the human ambiguity of the minotaur - the divine and bestial. Alex Woolf's Octet draws on threetypes of musical energy: outlandish and explosive, muscular and powerful, and pulsing and propulsive, and Benjamin Ashby's I've been planning for an impromptu explores improvisation inspired by the composer's free-jazz heroes Evan Parker and Barry Guy.


'[On Intermezzo to a Minotaur ] assemblage of instruments conceals a violence just underneath the surface that erupts in whiplike percussive energy and some thoroughly explosive solos' BBC Radio 3 New Music Show

'Layers of energy exploding in different directions … an exhilarating introduction to these young composers' BBC Radio 3 Record Review

'Lin has been particularly successful by creating a visual and exciting sound world and the piece gets the performance it deserves.' Nieuwe Noten


The Philharmonia Orchestra gratefully acknowledges support for Music of Today from Esa-Pekka Salonen.

The RPS is grateful for the support of these commisions from ABRSM, Britten-Pears Foundation, Delius Trust, The Radcliffe Trust and Harold Hyam Wingate Foundation.

The Philharmonia Orchestra's Composers' Academy is supported by:



All works were recorded live at Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall, London on 2 June 2019

JON STOKES (CLASSIC SOUND LTD) Recording Producer/Engineer

Catalogue number:
NMC DL3041
Release Date:
24 April 2020