John Hardy, Composer and Director

John Hardy took a keen interest in music from birth. Before he could stand, he experimented with the sounds of the strings at the bottom of the family piano. At six he started piano lessons, composing onto manuscript paper and travelling alone on buses and trains. At eight he started trumpet and joined a Cathedral Choir. At twelve he was head chorister, regularly conducting and performing, and composed a concert suite for performance by his school orchestra. A choral scholarship helped him get into Oxford where he was then able to compose for every conceivable opportunity. Oxford University Orchestra commissioned a large-scale work which was performed, in the round, at the end of his last term.

That year he began four happy years as director of a choral music festival in Wiltshire; and he took a year in Advanced Composition at Guildhall School of Music & Drama. He continued long associations with Cardiff Laboratory Theatre, Odin Teatret, and many other international performance groups, culminating in several far reaching shows with Brith Gof - Disasters Of War, Gododdin, PaxPatagonia and Los Angeles.

Years of work with film makers reached a high point when a film about a Welsh poet killed at Passchendaele in 1917, Hedd Wyn, won RTS Best UK Single Drama, and was nominated for an Academy Award at the 1994 Oscars.

This was the year of John’s first chamber opera with Music Theatre Wales: Flowers was based on a play by the richly talented Welsh writer and director Ed Thomas. What followed was a twenty year association with Ed’s companies Y Cwmni and Fiction Factory, taking in several plays, a commercial film Rancid Aluminium and many TV projects, most recently Hinterland / Y Gwyll.

While John is used to composing in isolation, he is never happier than when he’s collaborating with artists and thinkers in other forms and disciplines, and above all with talented musicians who share a sense of commitment, curiosity and scrupulous attention to detail. The current John Hardy Music team members have not arrived by random chance - they are the very best of their generation, and every day John is proud and delighted to share ideas and opportunities with these exceptional and trusted colleagues.

There is so much talent, expertise and good will in the world. John Hardy Music is committed to finding ways to stay connected and keep creative, without boundaries, regardless of recent seismic events.