Robin Walker was born in York, England, and attended schools attached to York Minster for ten years. He studied composition at the University of Durham with the Australian composer David Lumsdaine and subsequently taught at the Royal Academy of Music, London, and at the University of Manchester.
In the 1980s he undertook two visits to India to study the Buddhist temple music of the far north and the religious dance music of the south. The rhythmic liberation he experienced as a result of these visits is the most notable element of Dance/Still (1982), a chamber work in two parts which expresses concurrently a ritualised vitality and a religious stillness.
Walker resigned from teaching in 1987 and moved to the Pennine village of Delph in the north of England. His recent output includes works composed for the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, the Hilliard Ensemble and the English Chamber Orchestra. Of these, the 30-minute orchestral work The Stone Maker is considered to be one of the outstanding achievements in British music of the 1990s.
Composer Robin Walker (left), with Jill Taylor, soprano, and Ben McCabe, horn.
Jenny McCabe (left) is Rosetta Life artist-in-residence at Penrith Day Hospice, Cumbria, where she developed The Angel and the Shepherd Boy with John Story and Robin Walker.