ALEXANDER BALANESCU Film Composer & Virtuoso Musician Don’t recognise the name? Then put it into Google and you get more than a staggering 115,000 hits, including his 32 film and tv scores on IMDbPro, most recently for Daniel Mulloy’s 2010 Edinburgh Film Festival Best Short Baby, made by Sister Films for Channel 4, as well as sites with concert reviews and countless video performance clips on YouTube. This Romanian born prolific composer is one of the world’s leading contemporary violinists who started scoring films as a young man back in the late 1980’s. His best known score is for Philip Haas’s Oscar and Palm D’Or Nominated Angels and Insects for The Goldwyn Company/Playhouse Pictures. Last year he worked on another Philip Haas film, The Death of Pentheus, which was shown at the Venice Film Festival. Other screen credits include the Canal Plus comedy thriller Le Poulpe, directed by Guillaume Nicloux; Il Patigiano Johnny, directed by Guido Chiesa for Rome’s Fandango Films; Renny Barlett’s Eisenstein for the Canadian Amérique Film Company; more than 20 animations mostly written and directed by British multi-award winner Phil Mulloy; the Hungarian film Tablo for director Gabor Dettre; and How I Celebrated The End of the World, directed by Catalin Mitulescu for Strada Films/Les Films Pelléas, for which he won Romania’s GOPO award for Best Film Soundtrack. A child prodigy violinist, he and his family left communist Romania in 1969 for Israel where he continued his studies before going on to London’s Trinity College of Music. He then went to The Julliard in New York to complete his studies. In 1979 he became leader of the Michael Nyman Ensemble for 15 years and he was also a member of the Gavin Bryars Ensemble. He later joined the Arditti Quartet before establishing the Balanescu Quartet, now one of the contemporary classical world’s leading ensembles with a worldwide cult following – hence Google’s outstanding number of links. The Quartet currently has more than a dozen albums on release in various countries and regularly tours in four continents. As well he is featured on collaborations with, among others The Pet Shop Boys, Grace Jones, Goldfrapp, Spiritualized and Carla Bley. Alexander’s ballet scores have been performed by The Royal Ballet, The American Ballet Theatre, Hungarian National Ballet, Compagnia La Scala, Montreal Ballet, The Suzy Block Company and many others. 2007 saw the premiere, of his full length ballet Lorenzaccio, choreographed by Jochen Ulrich for Landestheater, Linz and performed by the Bruckner Orchestra. Three years ago he was commissioned by Opera North to set a Shakespeare sonnet as part of the presentation of Shakespeare’s complete works by the Royal Shakespeare Company. He has also written for productions at Theatre de la Place, Liege, Belgrade State Theatre, Cabaret Dromesko, Rennes, and Watford Palace Theatre. His increasingly strong links with his Romanian roots have been the catalyst for collaboration with the extraordinary singer and actress Ada Milea, resulting in the pieces The Island and God’s Playground. His solo recital programmes, most recently in London, Naples, Linz, Budapest, Gyor, Szgel and Bucharest include music by Nyman, Sciarrino, Reijch, Glass, in addition to his own works. He performed Korngold’s violin concerto at the South Bank’s Meltdown Festival in London with the London Philharmonic Orchestra..