Matthew Taylor was born in London in 1964. He won a Music Scholarship to Queen’s College, Cambridge in 1983, where he studied with Robin Holloway and conducted the University orchestras. In 1986 he was awarded the Conducting Scholarship to Guildhall School of Music and, after further studies as a post graduate at the Royal Academy of Music, gained the Dip RAM, their highest award. He also studied with Leonard Bernstein and conducted with Bernstein at the 1987 Schleswig-Holstein Festival. He subsequently received special encouragement from Robert Simpson and Sir Malcolm Arnold.
He has recorded for Radio 3, appeared as Guest Conductor with English Chamber Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, City of London Sinfonia, Royal Ballet Sinfonia, European Community Chamber Orchestra and St Petersburg State Academic Orchestra. He has recorded for Hyperion Records and the Dutton Epoch label. His world premiere CD of Simpson’s 11th Symphony was selected by Radio 3 as a Record of the Year in 2004. He has conducted first performances of works by Robert Simpson, Vagn Holmboe, David Matthews and James Francis Brown.
Matthew Taylor’s widely performed Symphony No.1 (1985) led to a number of important commissions. But it is in his deployment of large-scale processes that his music makes its most significant statements, demonstrating a natural feel for pace and growth, command of thematic development, symphonic thought and the expressive force of structure combining to give his scores life-force and durability. His works have been championed by BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Allegri and Dante Quartets, Emily Beynon, Emma Johnson, John McCabe, Martyn Brabbins, George Hurst, Richard Watkins and Raphael Wallfisch. His music has been recorded by Toccata Classics, Dutton Epoch and ASV White Line Series. To date he has written three symphonies (with the fourth being premiered in 2017), and concertos for clarinet, piano, horn and double bass, The “Needles” Overture, “Blasket Dances” for wind orchestra, six string quartets, a piano trio, other chamber music and songs. His music has been played in Germany, Italy, Denmark, the Czech Republic, Russia, America and the Baltic States.
Matthew has been Artistic Director and Featured Composer of the Malvern Festival (1992 -95), Composer in Residence at the Blackheath Halls 1999 series and the first ever Associate Composer of the recently formed chamber ensemble sound.collective (2003 - 05). In 2003 he became the founder and Artistic Director of the Royal Tunbridge Wells International Music Festival and in 2009 assumed the role as Artistic Director of the St Petersburg British Music Festival.