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Photograph by Tom Haniff

Robert Laidlow is a composer and researcher based in the UK. His work is concerned with discovering and developing new forms of musical expression rooted in the relationship between advanced technology and live performance.


From 2018-22 he was the PRiSM PhD Researcher in Artificial Intelligence with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra at the Royal Northern College of Music, resulting in the large-scale orchestral work Silicon (2022), the concerto Warp (2021), and the ensemble piece Three Entistatios (2019). He is currently a Fellow in Composition at Jesus College, Oxford, through which he is exploring the artistic possibilities presented by technologies including video games, artificial intelligence, and extended reality in the context of classical music.

His work has received wide press coverage, including features in the New York Times, the New Scientist, Sky News, and the Guardian, and has been broadcast on several occasions across national and international television and radio. His music has been performed by leading musicians in the UK, including the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Riot Ensemble, Psappha, the Britten Sinfonia, the Elias Quartet, and the Echea Quartet. He has been awarded a Royal Philharmonic Society Composer’s Prize, an Ivan Juritz Prize, and been nominated for two Ivor Novello Classical Awards.

After graduating from Emmanuel College, Cambridge, with First Class Honours, he studied composition with David Sawer at the Royal Academy of Music in receipt of the Dr. Mosco Carner Scholarship 2016-2018, where he also received regular lessons from Oliver Knussen. His PhD at the Royal Northern College of Music, primarily supervised by Emily Howard, was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

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