Joseph Bates

I'm a composer and artistic director whose work challenges the gaps between genres. I was raised on modern orchestral classics and studied at the University of Cambridge, but spent the rest of my time listening to rock, electronic music and hip hop. From university onwards, I played in bands, MD'd a drag group, busked open mics and mixed songwriting with symphonic works and opera.

With a diverse catalogue of music both scored and self-performed, 2018 has been a year of excitement, with important premieres at MATA Festival in New York and at Occupy the Pianos in London. You can find out more about my upcoming projects on my news feed.

My music blends the riffs and harmonies of rock with structures and instrumentation drawn from contemporary classical music. It combines intense, still, driven riffs, drifting synth sounds and notes that fall into the gaps of the traditional Western scale. Inspired by overdrive's blurring of harmony, this music sits somewhere between traditional chords and the freedom of the avant-garde.

I co-founded Filthy Lucre, an immersive, mixed genre music-night. As Artistic Director, I curate our programmes, selecting music that fascinates me, no matter its genre. We create events sympathetic to the differences between the music we programme but resistant to any notions of hierarchy.

This approach is wedded to my composition and to my academic work. I studied music at the University of Cambridge and undertook a Masters in musicology at Kings College London. I specialise in the decline of classical music's social prestige and the possibilities for its future.

How the Clore course impacted me

The Clore Course has increased my confidence and given me access to an inspiring and helpful artistic network outside of my art form.

How I am using my skills for change

Our cultural offering has become increasingly diverse since Clore, in part because it gave me the confidence to present my work to people outside my immediate circle, reducing my reliance on my own privileged social network.