Michael Lawson
AUTHOR

Michael Lawson

MICHAEL LAWSON is a Psychotherapist, Composer, Writer, Film Maker and Broadcaster. His varied career began in music as a composer and concert pianist in the early seventies, having studied with the great French teacher Nadia Boulanger at the Paris and Fontainebleau conservatoires, with the British composer Edmund Rubbra at the Guildhall School of Music, and at Sussex University with Donald Mitchell, the leading Britten and Mahler scholar. His piano professors were David Wilde and James Gibb. Michael was born in Brighton in 1952. His father and mother both loved music, took him to concerts, and encouraged him to learn the piano. Michael’s earliest musical instinct was to compose and his first piece at the age of ten was a suite of Hungarian Dances. Those piano lessons soon followed, and he gave his first BBC recital broadcast when he was thirteen. At fourteen he went to study with Edmund Rubbra at London’s Guildhall School of Music and in the same year was awarded the Worshipful Company of Musicians Composition Scholarship, the Wainright Composition Scholarship, and was the youngest recipient of the prestigious Guildhall Composition Prize. The following year, he was further awarded a special Arts Council Scholarship to pursue his composition studies in France with the great French teacher, Nadia Boulanger, whose deep and lasting influence on his musical development has never faded. Parallel to his music career has been his involvement in ordained ministry, and broadcasting. He is a former Archdeacon of Hampstead, and as an Archdeacon Emeritus, he served for seven years as a chaplain delivering psychotherapy in the Prison Service. For twenty years Michael was a writer and presenter of Pause for Thought on Radio 2, and he has appeared in a range of current affairs, music and religious programmes for BBC radio, television and independents broadcasters. He has produced many orchestral recordings and has written many books and articles covering his wide experience as a counsellor, as well as on theology and the arts. Foremost among his books on counselling themes are the widely translated Facing Series (Facing Anxiety and Stress, Facing Depression and Facing Conflict) The Better Marriage Guide and (with co-author, Dr David Skipp) a book on sexual development, Sex and That, which has been translated into twelve languages. Michael is the founder of Pipe Village Trust, a film-making human rights charity and has made seven full-length broadcast documentaries, one on AIDS/HIV orphans in Mozambique, and the six most recent are on the plight of the Dalits (the Untouchables) in modern India. India’s Forgotten Children has been screened across the world and featured on BBC World, and by many satellite broadcasters. When he was contemplating ordination, Michael’s teacher, Nadia Boulanger, asked him to promise he would one day return to composition. Now after that thirty-year gap, Michael is once more an active composer. Among his many compositions for orchestra and chamber ensembles he has written the music for his latest films, including the award-winning "India's Forgotten Children" (which is at present "going viral" on YouTube. ) In February 2016, his complete chamber music cycle was performed at London's All Souls Langham Place, including first performances of his flute concerto, and three saxophone pieces. Among other recent works, his Symphonic Movements has been heard at the Royal Albert Hall, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Hall and at the Royal Wedding Celebration Concert at the Cadogan Hall in London, where his latest Symphonic work, The Seasons, and his Royal Fanfare, "A Toast to Harry and Meghan", were also premiered. Michael’s work for Pipe Village Trust can be seen on Amazon Prime TV as well as on Vimeo and YouTube, and on his website. During the 2020/21 pandemic lockdown, Michael turned his attention to creative writing and authored three works: "Grandpa Goes To Pixieland” – a children’s novel about the ancient Winosaurs and their present day, evil leader, Emperor Kluzenkopf. "The Relationship Guide: Solve problems and enrich relationships in marriage and long term partnerships." For both these titles there are audible books, read by the actor, Guy Mott. "International Acclaim: One piano eight hands" is a novel about the Steinfelds, four generations of Polish Jewish concert pianists. It is set in Poland, Russia, the USA and London. Michael practices psychotherapy in his private practice in Cambridgeshire. He is married to Claire. They have three wonderful daughters and three mischievous little grandsons. More information about Michael’s work can be seen at www.michaellawson.info
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