Mark-Anthony Turnage (1960)
He has been called the Bad Boy of British Music, perhaps because of the many swear words and football chants that can be heard in his breakthrough opera, “Greek” from 1988. And perhaps because the BritArt phenomenon appeared in the same year as the artist bad boy, Damien Hirst, gathered together his like-minded artist friends in an acclaimed debut expo. Otherwise, it is Francis Bacon that is the favourite of Turnage, and who provided the inspiration for the often-performed jazz combo “Blood on the floor” – which incidentally is a kind of requiem for the death of the composer’s brother from an overdose.
Mark-Anthony Turnage grew up in a religious family in “sort of the working class” and Miles Davis was his first musical role model. The trumpet has remained a key part in his productions. With the festival’s new order “Nocturne”, Turnage delivers his third (!) trumpet concert for the favourite interpreter Håkan Hardenberger …
There are several Swedish connections in the cello concert Mark-Anthony Turnage composed for the Swedish Chamber Orchestra and the charismatic cellist Maya Beiser. And in spring 2020, Folkoperan in Stockholm is planning to play his newly written children’s opera “Coraline”. This is quite a considerable deviation for the opera dramatist Turnage, who created the much spoken-about “Anna Nicole”, which was a huge success at Covent Garden, and was compared to Alban Berg’s iconic “Lulu”. Indeed, it is about Anna Nicole Smith, the stripper who married an ageing oil baron. Turnage itself has shaken off his rebellious epithet and is now a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE).