Royal College of Music and Synaesthesia.

Ever since I was young, I always heard music as colour but never thought much about it. I thought it was normal. I played the piano and in my childhood I formed a band and taught myself the piano. I also grew up with a great appreciation and awareness for the senses too. My father was a Clergyman and throughout my early years I went to church with him. Music and colour were my refuge. Therefore in my twenties it is no surprise that I found a great connection and solace with the revelatory music of Olivier Messiaen whose music is composed and notated directly in terms of colour and also aspires and seeks connection to the beyond. It led to collaborations with musicians such as Gillian Weir and Peter Hill both experts in their field and in Messiaen’s music and many performances nationally and internationally.

In 2001 and 2006 I was commissioned by the South Bank to stage performances which took place at the Festival Hall and then other performances at Royal Academy of Music and were collaborations between myself and various musicians there. The relationships I established with some of the musicians here led to other work and further collaborations.

The events involved an exhibition of paintings at the York Gate Collection. Over a period of five or more years I worked almost exclusively with the music of Olivier Messiaen. ¬†This performance involved an interpretation in colour and gesture to what I could hear being played. The pieces I chose were mostly movements from “Quartet from the End of Time”.

The events culminated with performance painting in the Pulpit of ¬†Westminster Cathedral on Messiaen’s Centenary with a 100 strong Orchestra.



Royal Academy of Music

Royal Academy of Music. Medium: Photographic stills of Performance
  • Collaborators

    Christopher Redgate- Oboe

    Neil Heyde-Cello

    Peter Skaeverd Sheppard-Violin

    Aaron Schoor-Piano

    Sisi Burn-Photographer

  • Musical Works

    Quartet for the End of Time by Olivier Messiaen.