MacRae, Stuart

Stuart MacRae (born 12 August 1976) is a Scottish composer.[1]

Education and career

Stuart MacRae was born in Inverness, Scotland. He studied at Durham University with Philip Cashian and Michael Zev Gordon, and subsequently with Simon Bainbridge and Robert Saxton at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. By his mid-twenties he was writing astonishingly original and powerfully expressive works, and was receiving commissions from organisations such as the BBC and the London Sinfonietta as well as being appointed Composer-in-Association with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra. Often inspired by aspects of nature and humans' relationship to it, MacRae's style draws on various strands of European modernism, including the music of Igor Stravinsky, Elliott Carter, Iannis Xenakis, Harrison Birtwistle and Peter Maxwell Davies.

Key works

  • The Witch’s Kiss (1997; chamber ensemble)
  • Violin Concerto (2001)
  • Ancrene Wisse (2002; choir, orchestra)
  • Motus (2003; chamber ensemble)
  • Echo and Narcissus (2006; chamber ensemble/dance)
  • Birches (2007; chamber orchestra)
  • Gaudete (2008; soprano and orchestra)
  • Earth (2010; orchestra)


  • The Assassin Tree (2006; chamber opera)
  • Remembrance Day (2009; chamber opera)
  • Ghost Patrol (2011; chamber opera)


  • 2013 South Bank Sky Arts Award for Opera for Ghost Patrol.

Career highlights

Selected recordings