About Us

New Music in the South West (NMSW) is a Bristol based non-profit organisation running a music and education project serving the south-west of England.

We promote classical music as a vital, living art form that exists for the benefit of everyone regardless of age or background. We aim to take our concerts and post-concert discussions beyond the usual concert-going public, to new, young audiences and we play a crucial role in supporting the development of the region’s best young musicians through talks, composition workshops and our annual composition competition.

Our 2015 programme of composition workshops gave 43 GCSE and A’Level music students the opportunity to have their work performed and recorded by the Bristol Ensemble with guidance from some of the best composers currently working in the region. The workshops received overwhelmingly positive feedback from teachers and pupils alike with tremendous benefits being noted in terms of pupils’ confidence and motivation.

The success of these workshops has enabled us to expand our programme for 2016 and we will be holding more workshops at locations across the South West, providing opportunities for 90 talented young musicians.

We also hold an annual composition competition, the NMSW Young Composers’ Prize. In 2016 three shortlisted pieces from this prestigious competition will be given their world premières by the renowned Kokoro ensemble at the high-profile NMSW season finale concert at St. George’s, Bristol.

Our innovative, imaginatively programmed concerts introduce people of all ages and backgrounds to the incredible variety of exciting new music being written today. We always aim to present passionate performances of great music and we are proud to work with the best performers that the region has to offer including Kokoro, the Bristol Ensemble and numerous ad hoc groups of contemporary music specialists.

The growing list of composers who have been commissioned by NMSW ranges from promising young or early career composers through to those of international repute. Including Anna Meredith, John Pickard, Michael Ellison, Litha Efthymiou, Geoff Poole, Julian Leeks, Sara Garrard and many others.

We are very pleased to be able to include among our partners in the project St. George’s in Bristol, Hauser & Wirth in Somerset, Kokoro Ensemble and Bristol University.

For more information on any aspect of what we do please go to the contact page.