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Member Profile - Denis betro
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Profile – Denis Betro
Denis Betro is a true wild card, and one of the most original and accessible voices in contemporary composition. Scraps of music remembered from the radio and other childhood reminiscences like the Arabic music of the Lebanese community in which he grew up, popular song, the greats of jazz and rock’n’roll, all contribute to his richly evocative source material. This is balanced by a powerful and eclectic technique that reaches naturally for expansive forms.
Betro was born in Dunedin, New Zealand in 1949. His Lebanese parents were part of a cohesive ethnic community dedicated to building a viable economic life in a new country.
Without basic music training Betro taught himself to play, by ear, not only the music of his people, but also most of the current music in the pop charts. In time he learnt to read music and by his early teens was already composing extended works for piano, performing his own Lebanese Rhapsody at a High School concert.
At age 16 Betro studied Composition at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Encouraged by his own progress and the need to expand his horizons, he made his way to London, eventually winning a place at the Royal College of Music to study Composition with Alan Ridout. He completed further studies with Edwin Carr and Edwin Moon.
Betro is a full-time composer and lives on a houseboat in Weybridge, Surrey.
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