‘McDowall’s work has qualities that include a communicative gift that is very rare in modern music, a composer well worth seeking out; she is very gifted, and always knows exactly what she is doing, and why.’

GRAMOPHONE

‘Cecilia McDowall’s music constantly tweaks the ear with her range of spicy rhythms and colours, then suddenly produces a highly atmospheric and grippingly expressive interlude which is just as compelling.’
GRAMOPHONE

‘McDowall’s work has qualities that include a communicative gift that is very rare in modern music, a composer well worth seeking out; she is very gifted, and always knows exactly what she is doing, and why.’

GRAMOPHONE

CECILIA McDOWALL

‘Cecilia McDowall is another of the new generation of highly communicative musicians who favours writing which, without being in any way facile, is brightly cogent, freshly witty and expressive in its own right.’
GRAMOPHONE

‘The life-affirming, restorative strength of her direct and unaffected speech is fully communicated in these carefully prepared, joyous performances.’
TEMPO

FEATURED WORK

‘There was nothing lacking in invention, in this new work. The musical and emotional contrasts were tangible. At the outset, the glowering darkness of the Philharmonia’s woodwind, taken up by rich textures in the chorus, with a periodic rocking motion, and the alternation, then unifying, of the soloists all had a mesmerising effect.’
CHURCH TIMES

 

‘There is much sparkling and shimmering in McDowall’s writing. Cadences quiver and shiver unresolved, then vaporise as though overcome by their mysteriousness.’ 
THE TIMES

EVENTS

Forthcoming Concerts

21 August 2022 | Charles Wood Festival | Armagh Cathedral

Location: St Patrick's Church of Ireland Cathedral, Armagh, Cathedral Close, Armagh

6 September 2022 | The Sixteen | Choral Pilgrimage

Location: St Martin in the Fields, Trafalgar Square, London, UK

FEATURED RECORDING

Recorded by the superb Choir of Trinity College, Cambridge, conductor Stephen Layton, the Hyperion label releases a CD of Cecilia McDowall’s sacred choral music on 2 April.

McDowall’s keen sensitivity to text and her flair for writing vocal lines that are grateful to sing are just two of the virtues which justify the success of her choral music. Her original and distinctive voice is well served by Stephen Layton and his Trinity College forces.

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LATEST NEWS

Jubilate Deo premiere | Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Concert

Jubilate Deo premiere | Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Concert

On Friday, 3 June, Cecilia McDowall’s Jubilate Deo will be premiered at the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee concert at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. Her Jubilate Deo was commissioned and first performed at St Michael and All Angels Church, Dallas, Texas, director,...

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Feature in the New York Times

Feature in the New York Times

A New Carol for an Old Christmas Tradition by Alex Marshall LONDON — Every Christmas Eve, the British composer Cecilia McDowall follows the same routine. At 3 p.m., as family members arrive at her London home, she goes into the kitchen, turns on the radio and starts...

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OUP CATALOGUE

‘During the past few years the music of this British composer has been heard more and more, and her output has impressed audiences, players and critics alike. It deserves to.’

‘During the past few years the music of this British composer has been heard more and more, and her output has impressed audiences, players and critics alike. It deserves to.’

‘She constantly tweaks the ear with her range of spicy rhythms and colours then suddenly produces a highly atmospheric and grippingly expressive interlude which is just as compelling.’
GRAMOPHONE

‘She constantly tweaks the ear with her range of spicy rhythms and colours then suddenly produces a highly atmospheric and grippingly expressive interlude which is just as compelling.’
GRAMOPHONE