Emma Wilde

As part of our #afemalecomposerday campaign marking International Women's Day, we highlight the life and work of composer Emma Wilde. 

Emma Wilde- “I think a lot of people are afraid of applying the word composer to themselves”

Drawing her inspiration from mythological sources such as Greek tragedy and the Mayan calendar, Emma Wilde creates a rhythmic and atmospheric sound world. Her compositions have been performed internationally, being included in concerts and festivals in Mexico, Lithuania and Poland.

Our Q&A with Emma brought up a particularly interesting topic: the apprehension about labelling oneself as a composer, and feeling confident enough to do so. Emma also addressed the challenges she has faced as a composer today.

"I think a lot of people are afraid of applying the word composer to themselves as it has lot of connotations of ‘great’ composers of the past and conjures up images of old, crazy-looking men locked in their attics. However, if you consider that the origin of the word comes from the Latin composer meaning ‘one who puts together’ I think it is an adequate reflection of what I am doing – putting sounds together."

“I find that the challengers I face are the same faced by any younger emerging composer, for instance it is difficult to break through and get your voice heard in an extremely competitive environment in a political climate which does not encourage or value the arts. I also find the North/South divide to be a problem and the challenges of social class. A lot of the composition and networking opportunities are found in London and as a composer based in the North this is an added challenge in breaking through.”

“I think all composers have a responsibility to compose honestly and to the best of their ability to ensure that the art form continues.”

Emma Wilde's British Music Collection profile can be found online here


Composer Profile: Emma Wilde