Geoffrey Burgon

Geoffrey Burgon

Birth
Hambledon, City of Winchester, Hampshire, England
Death 21 Sep 2010 (aged 69)
Gloucester, City of Gloucester, Gloucestershire, England
Burial Bisley, Surrey Heath Borough, Surrey, England
Memorial ID 59384705 · View Source
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Composer. Though he penned a large number of respected classical works, he shall probably be better remembered for the television scores he wrote and often conducted. Coming to music at a rather late age, he became a self-taught jazz trumpeter in his mid-teens, and later studied composition at London's Guildhall School of Music and Drama; after supporting himself with his trumpet for several years he decided, at around 30, to sell his instruments and devote himself to composition. Though he had a few early successes, such as a 1968 ballet based on the "Five Sonnets of John Donne" which won the Prince Pierre of Monaco Award, progress was slow until an opportunity came to write background music for the mid-1970s "Doctor Who" miniseries. In 1976 he produced his best known 'serious' piece, a "Requiem" which was well-received at the time it was premiered at the Three Choirs Festival and at his death continued to be performed, as well a a two act musical drama titled "The Fall of Lucifer". Burgon captured an Ivor Novello Award in 1979 for "Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy", with the "Nunc Dimittis" played in the closing minutes becoming a pop hit, and earned a repeat of the honor in 1981 with his score for "Brideshead Revisited". He wrote several other successful commercial scores including those for "Monty Python's Life of Brian" (1979), The Chronicles of Narnia (1988-1990), 2000's "Longitude", and "The Forsyte Saga" (2002-2003), the last two named taking BAFTA Awards. While writing for the entertainment media Burgon produced a large number of vocal, choral, and instrumental pieces throughout his life including the 1990 opera "Hard Times" (based on Dickens' novel of that name), "Merciless Beauty", a 1997 piece for countertenor, and 2003's "Alleluia Pasallat" for chorus and orchestra which received its world premiere before the Queen. In his spare time he collected and maintained high performance automobiles, and authored mystery novels in which the protagonist is a musician who drives fast cars. Burgon died following a short illness, leaving a significant recorded legacy as both composer and conductor.

Bio by: Bob Hufford


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bob Hufford
  • Added: 29 Sep 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 59384705
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Geoffrey Burgon (15 Jul 1941–21 Sep 2010), Find A Grave Memorial no. 59384705, citing St John the Baptist Churchyard, Bisley, Surrey Heath Borough, Surrey, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave .