Turnage, Mark-Anthony (1960--) By Venn, Edward
Mark-Anthony Turnage is one of the leading British composers of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. His prolific output fuses stylistic elements, compositional techniques, and instrumentation from art music, jazz, and popular music, as well as, on occasion, more quotidian material such as football chants. The experience of working with jazz musicians such as Peter Erskine (a regular collaborator) has resulted in a long-standing commitment to improvisation in his music.
Born in Essex, 1960, Turnage encountered a considerable range of art music through his family and, particularly, BBC Radio 3. Turnage had compositional lessons as a teenager with Oliver Knussen; like Knussen, Turnage later studied with John Lambert at the Royal College of Music and Gunther Schuller at Tanglewood. It was during his time at the Royal College that he familiarized himself with jazz and soul; Miles Davis became a particular influence.