Robert Ames is at the forefront of a new generation of musicians questioning the conventions and rituals surrounding classical music. He is Co-Artistic Director and Conductor of the London Contemporary Orchestra and is also well known as an innovative programme curator. Robert has led the LCO in sell out concerts at The Printworks and Oval Space in East London, the Royal Festival Hall, Barbican Centre, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and BBC Proms at the Tate Modern and Royal Albert Hall.
Recent and upcoming conducting engagements include the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Moscow New Music Ensemble, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Aarhaus Symphony Orchestra, Kazakhstan State Symphony, Belarusian State Symphony, Symphony Orchestra of India, Wordless Symphony Orchestra, City Of London Sinfonietta, London Electronic Orchestra and The Manchester Camerata.
Robert has worked closely with many leading figures in new music, including Philip Glass, Meredith Monk, Bryce Dessner, Mica Levi, Nico Mulhy, Richard Reed Parry, Terry Riley, Anna Meredith and Steve Reich. He is also passionate about championing music from the leading composers of his own generation, premiering works by Shiva Feshareki, Claire M Singer, Emilie Levenaise Farroush, Catherine Lamb and Edmund Finnis amongst others. He has also collaborated with a variety of artists in other fields including fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, architect-designer Ron Arad and Sculptor Conrad Shawcross. Recent forays and collaborations have also taken him into the world of pop working with artists such Actress, DJ Shadow, Jonny Greenwood, Thom Yorke, Jamie XX and Frank Ocean.
His work has encompassed a number of film projects, as conductor, orchestrator and producer. These include the soundtracks for Naji Abu Nowar’s Theeb (Oscar nomination 2014), John Maclean’s Slow West (Sundance Award 2015), Ridley Scott’s Alien: Covenant (2017) and Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread (Oscar nomination 2018). This year he conducted live performances of the Phantom Thread soundtrack at screenings of the film in Los Angeles, New York, Rotterdam and the film’s European premiere in London. A recording which Robert conducted earlier this year with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic will soon be released on Universal Music’s Mercury KX label, including an arrangement he made of Jamie XX’s ‘To The Nines’
Upcoming projects include John Luther Adams’s Become Ocean and Giacinto Scelsi’s Uaxuctum at the Barbican and a performance of Philip Glass’s Bowie Symphony Trilogy at the Royal Festival Hall, as well as tours with the Symphony Orchestra of India, Kazakhstan State Symphony Orchestra and recording sessions at Abbey Road Studios and Air studios.
“New music presented with style rather than po-faced seriousness…performed with such devoted care.” – The Telegraph