David Owen Norris, Professor of Musical Performance at the University of Southampton, Visiting Professor of Fortepiano at the Royal College of Music and a well-known broadcaster, will give a lecture on ‘Performance as Polemic’ in the Alexander Gibson Opera School, RSAMD at 5pm on Tuesday 14th September.
Norris is Professor of Musical Performance at the University of Southampton and Visiting Professor of Fortepiano at the Royal College of Music, an Honorary Fellow of Keble College, Oxford, Educational Fellow of the Worshipful Company of Musicians, and a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music and of the Royal College of Organists. He was Organ Scholar at Keble, and left Oxford with a First and a Composition Scholarship to study in London and Paris. He was Repetiteur at the Royal Opera House, Harpist at the Royal Shakespeare Company, Artistic Director of Festivals in Cardiff and Petworth, Chairman of the Steans Institute for Singers in Chicago, and the Gresham Professor of Music in the City of London. His many radio series have included The Works, But I know what I like and All the Rage, and he presented the drive-time show In Tune for several years.
First and foremost he is a pianist, beginning as an accompanist to such artists as Dame Janet Baker, Jean-Pierre Rampal and Larry Adler. In 1991, after a worldwide search, the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival appointed him the first Gilmore Artist, a quadrennial award. His subsequent international solo career has included concertos with the Chicago and Detroit Symphony Orchestras and the Handel & Haydn Society in Boston (amongst many other North American orchestras), the Philharmonia, the Academy of Ancient Music, and several of the BBC’s orchestras, including four appearances at the Proms: and solo recitals all over North America and Australia, and in every European country from Hungary westward.
Recent recordings include Mendelssohn songs and the complete Songs without Words incorporating new theories of musical syntax, Britten’s Who are these children?, and newly discovered pieces from Jane Austen’s music collection. Norris’s BBC Radio 4 programme Jane Austen’s iPod, broadcast on January 2nd, immediately led to the commissioning of four more such programmes on literary figures, which will culminate in Dickens on Christmas Day. This summer he has appeared in the Bristol ‘Worlds to Conquer’ conference, the Royal Society conference on Early Science, the Cheltenham Science Festival, and the Harrogate Crimewriting Festival.