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date: 25 August 2019

Usher, Julialocked

  • Marie Fitzpatrick

Extract

(b Oxford, July 21, 1945). English composer. A pianist and flautist, she studied composition at Cambridge University with Richard Orton and subsequently at York University with Robert Sherlaw Johnson. She later trained as a music therapist (1985–6). In 1980 she and the composer Enid Luff jointly set up the music publishing company Primavera.

Usher’s solo instrumental pieces are dramatic, technically demanding and well-structured monodies. She has also written chamber works and a number of multimedia compositions. The powerful and arresting A Grain of Sand in Lambeth (1986) graphically demonstrates the melodic and rhythmic flexibility of her musical language. Some of her piano works, including Pentimento (1979) and Marak (1989), have been recorded.

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