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Lee Bracegirdle : Represented Artist

"In Bracegirdle's music there is the strong modern influence of the expressionists of the second Viennese school ... with the music hinting at neo-romanticism." -quote from Lalo Schifrin

Random Audio Sample: Ammerseelieder (baritone with full orchestra) by Lee Bracegirdle, from the CD Sydney Symphony Contemporary Music Festival 05.

Photo of Lee Bracegirdle

Lee Bracegirdle began his early musical training in Philadelphia, studying keyboard and various wind instruments, settling with the French horn at age 14. He began tertiary musical studies at the Philadelphia Musical Academy specialising in horn and organ, then at the Juilliard School in New York as a horn student of James Chambers, earning BM and MM degrees. Among the mentors at Juilliard who influenced his compositional style were the composers Pierre Boulez, Vincent Persichetti, Jacob Druckman and Robert Starer.

In 1976-77 he was co-principal horn with Mexico's Orquesta Filarmónica de la UNAM and principal horn with the México City Chamber Orchestra. In 1977 he was appointed solo horn with the Hof Symphony Orchestra in Bavaria, where he co-founded Germany's premier brass quintet, Rekkenze Brass.

He became Associate Principal Horn with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in 1980, where he served until his retirement in 2012. He has made numerous recordings for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation as a soloist, chamber musician and principal horn. He has edited horn studies for the I.M.C. in New York, and his original studies and brass chamber music are published by 3-C Musikverlag in Bochum, Germany. He has given horn masterclasses in conservatoria in Europe and in North and South America.

From 1990-1992 he studied conducting with Michael Gielen at the Salzburg Mozarteum, took part in master classes with Sergiu Celibidache, and made his conducting debut in 1990 with the Orchestra of the Mozarteum. Since 1996 he has been musical director of the Australian Chamber Ballet.

In 1998 he was awarded first prize in the Zoltan Kodaly International Composers' Competition for his first orchestral work, Divertimento for Orchestra. This award earned him an honorary diploma from the Chicago-based Kodaly Academy. He was subsequently commissioned by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra for three new compositions: Variations for Orchestra, Ammerseelieder and Euphonium Concerto, which led to further requests for solo works from his orchestral colleagues: Landscape Visions for orchestra, Passacaglia and Gigues for double-bass and chamber orchestra, and Violin Concerto. In 2007 the American Wind Symphony Orchestra commissioned and premiered Threnos for horn and symphonic winds, and, in 2014, the SSO premiered his Legends of the Old Castle for solo harp, winds and percussion. His Violin Concerto was premiered in 2015.

Lee Bracegirdle was composer in residence at Bundanon in 2003 and 2013 and at the Brahmshaus in Baden-Baden, Germany, in 2012 and 2014. His works are published by C.F. Peters.

Lee Bracegirdle — current to February 2016

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Legends of the old castle : for harp, symphonic winds and percussion (2012) Commissioned by American Wind Symphony Orchestra, Robert Boudreau.
Concerto for euphonium and orchestra (euphonium with full orchestra) (2007) Commissioned for Sydney Symphony's 'Meet the Music' series
Ammerseelieder (baritone with full orchestra) (2005) Commissioned by Symphony Australia.
Odd couples (quartets: horn, piano, violin, cello) (1997) Commissioned for the Australian Chamber Ballet

Analysis & Media

- Document: Profile: Rita Williams profiles Lee Bracegirdle in the first of a series on our Australian composers.

- Video: Concerto for violin and orchestra by Lee Bracegirdle