Donald S Murray – writer & poet

Donald S Murray
writer & poet

Acclaimed composer Electra Perivolaris has spoken of her “an absolute joy” of setting some of Donald S Murray's poetry to music.

She told the prizewinning writer and poet: “I’m looking forward to working with more of your poetry!”

This formed part of a broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in June…and in July more of his work formed part of “a wonderful week working with the The Carice Singers at the Cheltenham Music Festival Composer Academy,” Electra writes on Twitter.

“My new choral piece, ‘If This Island...’, another setting of the poetry of Donald S Murray, was performed on Friday. Thank you to all who made this such an inspiring week!”

And ‘Geese flying over my head, then into the distance’, her piece for solo viola and recorded soundscape, was performed by viola player Katherine Wren at a Scottish Awards for New Music event, live streamed through the new music scotland website! ( from Stromness Town Hall, in Orkney.

Described as a 'Classical Star of the Future' by BBC Introducing, Electra Perivolaris, who was born in 1996, is a composer and pianist from Ayrshire with mixed British and Greek heritage. Her music has been performed across the UK and internationally by ensembles including the BBC Singers, Hebrides Ensemble, Aurora Orchestra and London Symphony Orchestra.  

Following success in the BBC Young Composers Competition 2014, Electra had her music performed across the UK and internationally by musicians of the London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Hebrides Ensemble, the BBC Singers, Aurora Orchestra, Red Note ensemble and DeCoda ensemble in venues such as the Royal Festival Hall, BBC Maida Vale Studios, Kings Place, LSO St Luke's and Glasgow’s City Halls.

She is an Associate Member of the London Symphony Orchestra’s Soundhub scheme for Emerging Composers and is Ambassador for the BBC Young Composer Scheme.

She was described by BBC Radio 3’s Verity Sharp as representing ‘a new generation of female trailblazers’, following a broadcast of Electra's music on ‘Late Junction’, and was selected by BBC Radio 3 as 'one of 11 inspiring female composers from past to present', alongside composers such as Meredith Monk.

Electra's music is centred around the depiction of physical and emotional landscapes, reflecting on the natural world and our place within it and linking to her interest in folk and world music and the impact of music on communities. Sir James MacMillan CBE has described her as 'one of the most exciting young composers emerging in Scotland today’. 

Electra is completing a Masters degree in Composition at London's Royal Academy of Music on the MMus Composition course, with further studies in piano, after being awarded an RAM Trust Scholarship, a grant from the Scottish International Education Trust and a Vaughan Williams Bursary Award from the RVW Trust.

which will be recorded and released on Classical label Ravello, and a commission for Classical guitarist, Sasha Poya Savaloni. She was recently commissioned by the Aurora Orchestra for their debut concert back at Kings Place since the first COVID-19 lockdown. 

Electra first heard her music performed live at the age of 16 when her piece, ‘Obon Lantern Festival’, was selected by Judith Weir CBE to be performed and workshopped by the BBC Singers in the BBC Proms 2013. Electra then went on to have success in the BBC Young Composers’ Competition 2014 and her piece, ‘Furu Ike Ya?’, for timpani and electronics, was performed at the BBC Proms and broadcast on BBC Radio 3.



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