Shirley Thompson Makes Her Mark on the Power List


Shirley Thompson, an accomplished musician and composer of Jamaican descent, has been recognized consistently for her hard work and achievements on the Power List of Britain’s 100 Most Influential Black People Power List of Britain’s 100 Most Influential Black People. The Voice reports:

Dr. Shirly Thompson credentials appear to be indelibly inscribed in the annals of the Power List of Britain’s 100 Most Influential Black People. Over the last eight years, from 2010 to 2017, the innovative composer’s achievements have been recognised on the annual compilation, this year marked at number nine.

While many laypersons may not have been familiar with the prolific composer’s achievements, before reading the Power List, her status within the field of classical music is legendary. Over the past 40 years Thompson was the first woman in Europe to have composed and conducted a symphony: New Nation Rising, A 21st Century Symphony.

Speaking exclusively to the Voice following her nomination to the Power List the composer said: “I am surprised and very honoured to have consistently been nominated. It’s very encouraging to know that people appreciate the work I do. “I tell stories and narratives using images, orchestra and dancers to feast the senses on the big stage and to inspire.”

The composer of Jamaican descent has been inspiring art lovers for decades. Shortly after graduating with a composition degree from Goldsmith’s College [. . .] she began working on major BBC drama series, including South of the Border and Dreaming Rivers.

During a career spanning almost three decades, music by Shirley J. Thompson has been commissioned to write for contemporary ballet for pieces including Push and Opera. She wrote the music for Sacred Mountain: Incidents in the Life of Queen Nanny of the Maroons. The work premiered on the opening night of Tete a Tete, the Opera Festival in 2015.

[. . .] She recalls: “When I started writing my classical music style was not in vogue. At the time, there was an emphasis on avant garde styles, which were very complex and incomprehensible to many people. [. . .]

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