Glen Downie is a New Zealand composer, currently embarking on a PhD in composition at the University of Cambridge with Jeremy Thurlow on a Cambridge Trust International Scholarship.
Originally based in Wellington, he holds a Master of Musical Arts from Te Kōkī New Zealand School of Music, where he studied under Michael Norris and Dugal McKinnon. Past teachers have included John Psathas, Kenneth Young and Gao Ping. He has been a finalist in the 2014 NZSO Todd Corporation Young Composers Award, a co-winner of the NZ Trio's inaugural composing competition (2015), and won multiple prizes from the NZSM, including three second placings in the composers competition, the 2015 Jenny McLeod award, and the 2017 Matthew Marshall Prize for guitar composition.
He has had performances by the Intrepid Music Project, Stroma, Te Kōkī Trio, and the SMP Ensemble of which he has been co-director since 2014. In 2016 he was selected to participate in the Palendriai International Composers Course in Lithuania, and also created a soundtrack (along with Christopher Wratt) for Sonya Lacey's video installation Infinitesimals.
2017 saw the première of his orchestral work 'Hot Coals' by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, which was also selected for the Tactus Young Composers Forum, Belgium, where it was workshopped by the Brussels Philharmonic (cnd. Brad Lubman), alongside a workshop and concert by Ensemble Musiques Nouvelles in Mons. As the 2019 NZSO National Youth Orchestra Composer in Residence, he wrote 'Light Speckled Droplet' for orchestra and chorus, conducted by James Judd.
Also a keen free improviser on saxophone, he has played with Jeff Henderson, Christopher Wratt, Pyramid Lake (an improvised quartet with Rob Thorne, Simon Eastwood and Dexter Stanley-Tauvao) and founded the large improvising ensemble Composting Impostors, as well as presenting an original set with the Arthur Street Loft Orchestra series in Wellington.