Kiwi composer David Grahame Taylor is internationally renowned – and he’s only 26

David Grahame Taylor’s Embiosis is be performed for the first time by the NZSO this weekend.

At just 26 years of age, David Grahame Taylor is taking the classical world by storm.

The Auckland composer will watch his composition Embiosis be played for the first time by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra at the Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington this weekend.

“It’s great, I’m very excited. It’s such an incredible thing for a young composer in New Zealand to have happened – to have our premier orchestra performing one of your compositions – it’s great,” Taylor said. 

Embiosis will feature as part of the Pathétique – Tchaikovsky and Dvořák concert tour,  led by Singaporean Darrell Ang, 37, who conducted the NZSO’s recording of works by Chinese composer Zhou Long, which was nominated for a Grammy Award last year.

The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra’s Pathetique – Tchaikovsky & Dvorak concert tour will be led by Singaporean Darrell Ang.

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Ang was the youngest person to be made Associate Conductor of the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and has worked with many of the world’s best orchestras and Asia’s top ensembles.

It’s a prestigious moment for Taylor, who was approached BY the NZSO organisers requesting to perform his piece.

Living in San Francisco, he has just completed his two-year Masters degree in musical composition at the at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and will return to Wellington in time to see his work being performed.

Taylor’s musical career started on the piano at the age of seven, where he played pop music and jazz – classical music was never really his vibe until he reached high school.

It was the likes of Beethoven’s Symphonies and Gustav Holst’s The Planets that enticed him in.

The Planets just really grabbed me…they’re an incredible piece of music. They kind of go through all the ranges of emotion – from terror to peace to joviality. I had never heard that kind of expression in all the music that I had been exposed to before that,” he said.

At high school, he began composing music – though he doesn’t count his four early pieces in his current portfolio. 

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