British composer Max Richter is the next candidate in our Consonant Classical Challenge. Max Richter has strong academic credentials. He studied with Luciano Berio and graduated from the Royal Academy of Music.
After graduation, Richter co-founded the contemporary ensemble Piano Circus. During his tenure, the group commissioned works by Arvo Part, Philip Glass, and Brian Eno, among others. Richter's own music reflects some influence by those composers, as well as some contemporary pop sensibilities.
Richter has also written extensively for films and documentaries, and his music is well-suited to those forms. His work is richly atmospheric, almost impressionistic in feel. You won't necessarily hear catchy tunes you can hum along with, but if you like Debussy, you'll find a kindred spirit in Richter.
On the Nature of Daylight, from his 2002 project "Memoryhouse" is a good example of his orchestral writing.
Most of Max Richter's compositions are short (by classical standards). And that's not necessarily a bad thing. In programming a classical concert, there's always a need for short works of musical substance. Imagine a work like Last Days opening the second half of a concert...
Max Richter works comfortably in the world of classical music, film music, and even popular music (he produced Vashti Bunyan's comeback album). I think it's his strength. Richter speaks the musical language most classical and non-classical audiences understand.
The Trees is another of Richter's fine miniatures. Note the piano work -- Max Richter is an accomplished pianist as well as composer, and often blends those two talents.
Max Richter works comfortably in the world of classical music, film music, and even popular music (he produced Vashti Bunyan's comeback album, "Lookaftering"). I think it's his strength. Richter speaks the musical language most classical and non-classical audiences understand.
If more concert-goers (regardless of age) were exposed to his music, there might be an increased demand for it in symphony hall. There's plenty of demand for Max Richter outside of it.
Max Richter: Memoryhouse
Max Richter: Songs From Before
Max Richter: 24 Postcards in Full Colour