Born in London, Bushra El-Turk has written over 50 works for the concert hall, the stage, film, TV and live art performance. Her work is often defined by the integration of musics and musicians from different cultural traditions, and the compulsion to highlight and challenge socio-cultural issues. Her works blur written and improvisational elements, forbearing the influence of her Lebanese roots all the while leaning towards the theatrical, creating works that are '...ironic...', '...arresting...' and of 'limitless imagination'.
Selected by the BBC as one of the most inspiring 100 Women of today, her pieces have been performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Proms, BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Royal Opera House, London Sinfonietta, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group (BCMG), Manchester Camerata, Opera Holland Park, National Opera Studio, OrchestUtopica (Portugal), Athelas Sinfonietta (Denmark) Hermes Ensemble (Belgium), Orchestre National de Lorraine (France), Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, Latvian Radio Choir, Ensemble Saraband (Germany), Atlas Ensemble , Ensemble Zerafin, Orkest de ereprijs (Holland), Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra, Lunatics at Large (USA), Wallis Giunta and Wissam Boustany. Performances have been at venues including the Lincoln Centre (New York), Deutsche Oper Haus (Berlin), Montpellier Opera House, Théâtre du Châtelet (Paris), Bridgewater Hall (Manchester), Opera Birmingham Symphony Hall, Cadogan Hall, the Southbank and the Barbican (London).
In 2017, she completed an AHRC funded PhD in Musical Composition at the University of Birmingham under the supervision of Michael Zev Gordon where she explored the integration of Middle-Eastern and Western art music.
2019 saw the world premiere of Tmesis for Symphony Orchestra, performed by the BBCSO at the Dubai Opera House at the BBC Proms Opening night and was excited to be commissioned by the London Symphony Orchestra again to perform Tuqus for multi ability orchestra conducted by Sir Simon Rattle, a London Sinfonietta commission and a piece for Studio Dan, commissioned by the MusikProtokol festival in Gratz.
During 2020, Bushra had contributed to the curation of All Arias Bienniale Festival with Opera Ballet Vlaandern, DeSingel Antwerp, LOD Musiektheater, Concertgebauw Brugge and Musiektheater Transparent where she will be Guest Artist and face of the festival (postponed to Spring 2023). She also completed Woman at Point Zero Opera (commissioned by LOD Musiektheater), now postponed to 2022, as well as a Concergebauw Brugge commission based on their Angel Series. Additionally, Bushra has been co-commissioned by Orchestre de Chambre de Paris and Opéra Orchestre National Montpellier to write a concertino for Taegum and orchestra, performed by Hyelim Kim which will now premiere in the 2021/2022 Season in Montpelier and Paris.
Bushra’s current projects for 2021 and 2022 include a commission by YCAT (Young Concert Artists Trust) to write for string quartet (Adelphi Quartet), two pieces for the Aldeburgh Festival (Percussion concerto and string quartet) and a Research and Development project with the University of Sheffield (to be announced!).
Bushra enjoys teaching composition at all levels. Research areas include contemporary composition, cross-arts and cross cultural collaborations and the integration of composition and improvisation. She currently teaches at Royal College of Music Junior Department.
Bushra's services to music have included being an adjudicator for the British Composer Awards (now Ivor Composer Awards), and adjudicator for the Commonwealth Young Composer Awards and, also, member of the board of directors at the Incorporated Society of Musicians (2018-2021)
Bushra's music is published by Composers Edition and is artistic director of Ensemble Zar.
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