Born in Ayr. Rory Boyle was a chorister at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor, and studied composition with Frank Spedding at the RSAMD, as well as piano, organ, clarinet and conducting. A Caird Travelling Scholarship enabled him to continue his studies with Lennox Berkeley in London.
While his Scottish roots are never far away, Boyle’s music has a strong, mainstream European, Stravinsky-based rigour, with his own brand of virile, challenging but always comprehensible counterpoint, dissonance which is hard-fought yet never gratuitous, an unsentimental lyricism and unerring sense of architecture. Nicholas Cleobury, 1998 BBC Proms Programme.
He has won several important awards, most notably the BBC Scottish Composers’ Prize for his first orchestral score, and the Zaiks Prize for Winter Music premiered in Cracow, Poland. His list of works covers most genres from large orchestral scores to incidental music. He has been commissioned by many festivals, music societies and leading performers, and he has also written extensively for younger players with four children’s operas included in the list.
In 2006 he won a Creative Scotland award to write an opera based on the life of a feral German boy. The resulting score Kaspar Hauser, Child of Europe was premiered to critical acclaim at the RSAMD in 2010 and won for Boyle the Stage Category in the British Composer Awards of the same year.
Boyle shows a distinctive voice and fluent imagination. Financial Times.
A very accomplished score: a powerful and disturbing story told with theatrical flair, dramatic pacing and excellent characterisation. The music flows in an uninhibited and unselfconscious stream. Jury citation, British Composer Awards.
It’s an amazing concerto, a huge piece packed to the rafters and the basement with action, incident and atmosphere. The Glasgow Herald.
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