Gary Yershon

Gary Yershon’s 40-year career as a composer for drama includes work in theatre, film, television and radio.

Theatre includes many scores for the Royal Shakespeare Company (where he is an Associate Artist), the National Theatre, the West End (including the English-language premieres of Yasmina Reza’s plays Art, The Unexpected Man, Life (x) 3 and The God of Carnage) and Broadway (2009 Drama Desk nomination for The Norman Conquests).

TV work ranges from detective drama (Trial and Retribution IX & X) to children’s cartoons (James the Cat, Ebb and Flo).

His movie work has been for Mike Leigh. Their collaboration began with Topsy-Turvy (1999) on which Gary was musical director. His first film score for Mike was Happy-Go-Lucky (2008), followed by Another Year (2010, gaining Gary a nomination as European Film Award Best Composer), the short film A Running Jump (2012), and most recently Mr Turner (2014), for which Gary was nominated for an Academy Award.

He has written for BBC radio since 1979, beginning as a singer-songwriter for Radio 4’s Midweek. Since then Gary has composed for many plays, including The Odyssey, Gawain and the Green Knight, The Theban Plays, The Winter’s Tale, The Eve of St Agnes, Three Men in a Boat, as well as the 2002 Sonyaward winning Autumn Journal. For Radio 3 he translated and dramatized Pushkin’s Ruslan and Lyudmila, and contributed to The Verb.

Gary was born in London. He read Music and Drama at Hull University. Until 1991 he sustained a parallel career as an actor. He also works as a writer, translator, musical director and teacher.

He will contribute a chapter to Composers on Screen, to be published by McFarland & Co in 2016.