New "Composer in the House" Announced

06 Dec 2011

We are very pleased to announce that Huw Watkins will be taking up the position of Composer in the House with Orchestra of the Swan, as of 2012.

Composer in the House was created by the Royal Philharmonic Society and PRS for Music Foundation in 2005. The scheme enables composers and performers alike to have space to create new work, and seeks to engage audiences more actively with new music through long-term involvement with a composer.

To date, we have supported a ‘Composer in the House’ at three UK orchestras – Stephen McNeff at the BSO, Kenneth Hesketh at the RLPO and Anna Meredith at sinfonia ViVA. Each pairing has found different ways to weave the composer into the creative fabric of the organisation through commissioning, performing existing works, curating, learning and participation, audience development, online marketing and by bringing a human face to new music.

David Curtis, Artistic Director of Orchestra of the Swan comments:
“We are absolutely delighted that Orchestra of the Swan has been selected to receive this highly prestigious RPS/PRSF award.  The Composer-in-the-House award recognizes OOTS’ long-term commitment to commissioning and performing new music, placing contemporary composers at the heart of the concert programme. 

Huw Watkins is an outstanding musician and a composer we have been hoping to commission for some time. His appointment as our Composer-in-the-House from 2012-14 will create extremely exciting and innovative opportunities for Orchestra of the Swan, Huw, our partners in schools and at the Royal College of Music and of course, our audiences.  We will all be embarking on an extremely exciting musical journey over the next two years.”

Huw Watkins comments:
“I am thrilled to be starting this relationship with the vibrant and enterprising Orchestra of the Swan. I look forward to getting stuck in with the orchestra and involving myself with them in many ways, both as composer and pianist. I share David Curtis’s desire to bring new music to as wide an audience as possible, and am hugely grateful to the RPS/PRSF for giving us this opportunity to do so.”

More information

Download the press release


Dame Fanny Waterman DBE, pianist, teacher and founder of the Leeds Piano Competition: awarded RPS Honorary Membership in 2011.


The Philharmonic Society received its Royal title in 1912 and enjoys the immediate patronage of Her Majesty The Queen.