Judith Weir

Judith Weir

(born Cambridge 9 May 1954)

The first female Master of the Queen’s Music, Judith Weir’s compositions often draw on Medieval texts and history, as well as Scottish folklore.

Weir's Life

Born in Cambridge to Scottish parents, Weir studied composition with Sir John Tavener at school, then with Robin Holloway at Cambridge University.

Weir is known primarily for her stage works, beginning with The Black Spider, a 1985 one-act opera, followed by one more ‘micro-opera’, six full length operas and an opera for television. Blond Eckbert was composed in 1993, and premiered in 1994 with English National Opera at the London Coliseum.

Having held the posts of Artistic Director of the Spitalfields Festival, Composer in Association for City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Master of the Queen’s Music, Weir’s output has been revered for making simple musical ideas appear freshly mysterious.

Notable Operas

  • The Black Spider, 1985
  • A Night at the Chinese Opera, 1987
  • The Vanishing Bridegroom, 1990
  • Armida, 2005