Photograph © Ella Ronson + Andrew Chen
Andrew Chen is a Melbourne-born, London-based composer, whose recent works have centered on anthropomorphosis and percepts of 'the human' – particularly, the material sources, processes, and catalysts by which one embeds or perceives the embedding of agents or entities within a music.
He was a Royal Philharmonic Society Composer for 2021-22, and has enjoyed past collaborations with a number of musicians and ensembles including Wu Wei, Explore Ensemble (UK), Ensemble Offspring (AUS), and the National Children's Orchestras of Great Britain. During his time as RPS Composer, he had a set of commissions premiered by the Gould Piano Trio and Merton College Choir, at Cheltenham Music Festival 2022. Upcoming projects include, later in 2023, the recording and release of a revised version of ribbon, for saxophone octet, with the help of the Laefer Quartet (UK) and guests.
Andrew also actively maintains an extensive and varied performance practice as a jazz pianist and free improviser; he was the recipient of the 2021 Dankworth Award for Jazz Composition, and regularly undertakes a wide range of engagements in solo, combo, and other ensemble settings – including performances at the Royal Albert Hall, the Barbican, and Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club, and onstage appearances with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra (UK), and alongside Tim Garland, Tommy Blaize, and Hermeto Pascoal e Grupo.
Beyond his own creative practice, Andrew is a dedicated, passionate advocate for all forms of new music, and the musicians behind it. He is a Producer and Curator at ScoreFollower, the world’s most widely distributed free-to-access online platform for the dissemination of works by living composers, both as 'score videos' and through other related media, with a particular focus on widening access, and availability as an educational resource. Previously a member of The Ivors Academy's cross-genre Youth Council, he currently sits on its Classical Council. He was also previously an inaugural ABRSM Composer Mentee (2021-22).
Andrew studied at the Royal College of Music, London, with Alison Kay, Simon Holt, and Jonathan Cole, and in the time since has often returned to the RCM's Junior Department as a Deputy Teacher of Composition, Jazz Piano, and Musicianship.