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Stephen Lines's Discussions

The Road to Perdition

Started this discussion. Last reply by Stephen Lines Mar 23. 18 Replies

Some of you will recall that I posted a discussion with the same title as this one a few weeks ago. I am re-posting due to several requests both here on CF and on YouTube to extend the piece. This I…Continue

Tags: atonal, symphonic, music., avant-garde, music

The Road to Perdition

Started this discussion. Last reply by Lawrence Aurich Mar 1. 40 Replies

Being a traditionalist who believes in the mathematical truth that there are sufficient possibilities in traditional musical scales and modes to write into eternity without repetition, why should I…Continue


Started this discussion. Last reply by Bob Porter Feb 9. 3 Replies

I'm having some difficulty transferring a Musicxml file into Sibelius. There's an 'Import XML file' button which, when pressed, simply looks blank and does nothing (a bit like me when I'm tired).Can…Continue

What does a conductor do?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Stephen Lines Feb 12. 50 Replies

This is one of the most common questions that I have been asked over many years. If anyone else has had difficulty in giving an adequate/eloquent response may I humbly suggest the answer is here -…Continue


Stephen Lines's Page

Latest Activity

Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion New Feature - Composers Talk
"I always find your comments and evidence of your expertise interesting and illuminating Socrates so it’s a pleasure to hear from you. Yes, Piston’s books are quite brilliant in my view - he’s an excellent and extremely clear writer…"
Stephen Lines replied to Jon Corelis's discussion Russian Suite
"It is an open question when referring to phrasing and how it should be indicated - if at all. My view, after 50+ years as a performer, composer and conductor, is that I don’t want to spend time, which is expensive and limited, during…"
Stephen Lines replied to Jon Corelis's discussion Russian Suite
"Hi Jon, I have just listened to the complete set and can certainly hear Russian influences in these folk songs. Overall the lack of dynamics and contrasting instrumentation leaves me a little cold - of course these may partly be due to limitations…"
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion New Feature - Composers Talk
"Thank you Dane. Good luck with the brass writing (don't forget to dovetail the instruments for a fuller and more balanced sound - although I'm sure you know this already). Kitson - takes you back a while doesn't it, but he certainly…"
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion New Feature - Composers Talk
"Many thanks Ingo. I think Gav’s idea of interviewing members is a good one and I look forward to reading more about others on CF - I’m sure there will be many more interesting than mine (including yours of course)."
May 18
Stephen Lines replied to Dane Aubrun's discussion Concerto for String Orchestra. 1st movement. 2'50"
"Dane, There's some interesting stuff here and the piece is enjoyable to listen to. There's lots of material that could be developed further - depending of course on just how far you want to go. Personally I'd drop the slapstick…"
May 9
Stephen Lines commented on Thomas Chase Jones's blog post Having connection to the Creative Pool.
"The Creative Pool is vast, infinite and is alway available to everyone who knows how to connect and receive the ideas. This is to some degree a philosophy where the artist is the receiver, like a radio, so the more the receiver is tuned in the more…"
May 7
Stephen Lines replied to Olivér Kovács's discussion Olivér Kovács - Journey to the Center of a Black Hole
"This is the first time I've heard any of your music Oliver and it's very atmospheric. Of course it would work very well indeed as a film track and its driving rhythm and altering harmonies maintain interest throughout. Good stuff indeed.…"
Apr 23
Stephen Lines replied to Dane Aubrun's discussion Desert. Twilight.
"ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz! Oops! I'm awake suddenly and feel nicely refreshed. Dane this is certainly 'mood' music and with one's eyes closed it is easy to imagine the 'hand-in-hand' scenario as the evening…"
Apr 23
Stephen Lines replied to Doug Lauber's discussion Choose Your Best Samples
"Hugh, My samples have often received good feedback on this site and I use only Sibelius, but enhanced by NotePerformer 3. I find that good use of the expandable mixer deck in Sib helps, plus good orchestration of course. It's taken me a few…"
Apr 23
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion Proposed Contest "Imaginary Machines"
"Gav, as usual please count me in. Stephen"
Apr 23
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion Orchestra Sample, Feedback Sought
"Gav, To qualify what I've said - please be aware that an orchestral bass drum is about 300% larger than that found on a drum kit and its effect is almost elemental by comparison. Also, crash cymbals are a poor substitute for 22" Zildjian…"
Apr 13
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion Orchestra Sample, Feedback Sought
"Again, it depends on the style of music you're going to compose. Something martial would require timpani, snare drum, bass drum, 22" hand cymbals and perhaps tam-tam too. But of course just one percussionist would only be able to play one…"
Apr 12
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion Orchestra Sample, Feedback Sought
"Gav, The choice of what percussion is put on stage for a symphony concert is dictated solely by the music programme. Bear in mind it would take a large removal's van to transport everything percussive around. Some scores require 5 timpani…"
Apr 11
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion Orchestra Sample, Feedback Sought
"Great fun....some drumming!"
Apr 11
Stephen Lines replied to Gav Brown's discussion Orchestra Sample, Feedback Sought
"Hi Gav, I'm not quite sure what you're looking for here. As a user of Sibelius I have a huge array of percussion instruments available to me and when composing simply find what I want and use it accordingly. What software do you use and…"
Apr 10

Profile Information

What have you composed for? Or what medium do you work around?
Choir, Orchestra, Small Ensemble, Big Ensemble, Songs, Other
What is your favorite genre or style of music?
Is music your main income source?
No - Not Yet
Where do you live?
Hampshire, England
About Me (Must include at least one paragraph of biographical information about you as a composer) - blank or minimal answers on this line will cause your request to be rejected. Include a link to your website if you have one.
I attended the Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall as a Pupil in 1967-68 studying french horn under Alf Cursue - Alf was a specialist 4th horn player and a member of `God`s Own Quartet` which included Dennis and Aubrey Brain. On completion of the course I was appointed principal horn of the regimental Band of the 2nd Battalion Royal Anglian Regiment. I again attended Kneller Hall (as a Student Bandmaster) from 1975-1978 after which I was appointed Bandmaster of 1st Battalion Royal Anglian Regiment. Just 6-years later, because I perceived Army music at that time to be undergoing a rapid decline, I took voluntary redundancy.

After retraining I was appointed a member of the Directing Staff at the British Police Staff College (Bramshill) where I became responsible for running Simulated Operations Training of senior police officers from around the world in Critical Decision-Making Under Stress.

Whilst associated with the Police I studied for a Masters Degree in Police and Criminal Justice Studies and an Honours Degree in Psychology. Subsequently I was recruited by the Defence Evaluation Research Agency - now called QinetiQ - where I worked as a senior consultant within the Centre for Human Sciences.

I now compose full time in various genres but see myself in future concentrating on orchestral music and writing for the french horn - a second concerto has recently been completed.

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Stephen Lines's Blog

English Folk Song Suite No.1 & American Folk Song Suite No.1

Posted on June 23, 2016 at 2:14pm 2 Comments

These have been published elsewhere on CF but I thought some members might be interested in (and perhaps comment on) the contrast and appeal of these two arrangements. The American piece has been improved somewhat thanks to Bob Porter's input, for which many thanks.




Richard Wagner

Posted on April 30, 2015 at 7:47am 2 Comments

Richard Wagner's answer to a question was: "9 - W"

Can any of you bright sparks out there stretch your minds and tell me what was the question?


String Quintet/String Orchestra Op.2 No.1

Posted on February 26, 2015 at 10:12am 0 Comments



I have recently had the above composition reviewed by Paul Smith, Bob Porter and Per-Erik Rosqvist. They have made some very pertinent comments which I have taken on board with this latest…


Comment Wall (4 comments)

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Join Composers' Forum

At 8:32am on January 22, 2019, Timothy Smith said…

Thanks for taking me onboard!

At 9:38am on May 1, 2016, Ingo Lee said…

Hi Stephen, you're right about needing friends, but friends with talent and helpful ideas like yours are especially welcome, so thank you for that!

At 4:01am on August 27, 2015, Richards Viveknath said…

Glad to.
It was a good recommendation.

At 9:00am on November 27, 2013, Tyler Hughes said…

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