David Ibbett, composer

Sycamore Life

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David Ibbett headshot

David Ibbett is a British composer based in Boston. He has found musical inspiration in many places - songs, symphonies, pop, classical and the electronic - and bringing these strands together is his ultimate aim. The son of a scientist, he co-directs the Music of Reality performance series with pianist Sophia Subbayya Vastek.

David composes works for instruments and ensemble, often featuring live electronics. Projects span from chamber music (Albion Trails, 2009, BBC Symphony Octet) to inter-arts collaborations (Project 51, contemporary dance score for The Place Resolutions, 2012) and works for instruments and electronics (Beauty from Nothing EP, 2016). In all projects, he seeks a deep collaboration with musicians, scientists, artists and performers. 

-- Full Bio here



Live In Concert

David Ibbett: Electro Symphony

Live in concert, David’s music takes the audience on an electro-symphonic journey of growth and discovery, bridging the worlds of classical chamber music with electronic beats and sampled sounds of the universe. Joined by virtuoso performers like pianist Sophia Subbayya Vastek, the program explores particle physics, the fractal patterns of nature, the growth of an embryo, bleached coral reefs and rising global seas.


Many of David’s pieces were composed in collaboration with the Music of Reality concert series, a project that combines music and science in live performance. He has collaborated with physicists, biologists, engineers, sociologists and oceanographers to create diverse multimedia works that come together in an immersive surround-sound performance. 

Article: Pick of the Week 2/18/19-  Timesunion

Article: David Ibbett, composer - Boston Voyager

Article: ALBUM REVIEW: Sophia Subbayya Vastek’s Histories - Second Inversion

Article: ’Reef Music’ concert explores underwater world through music - Daily Free Press

For bookings - Contact


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Click the titles to see information about each piece, listen, purchase scores and view sample pages. Purchase of all electronics scores includes the design of a custom electronic patch to suit the needs of performance

Video Works

Drosophila (2019) - footage by Tomer et al 2012


Works for Instruments and Electronics

Floods and Tears (2018) for piano and electronics, 11'30"

Phenomena of Growth (2017) for piano and electronics, 10'00"


Beauty From Nothing (2016) for piano and electronics, 20'00"

Branches (2015) for marimba, bass clarinet and electronics, 6'30"


Europa (2015) tone poem for flute (doubling piccolo, flute, alto flute) and electronics, 30'00"


Islands (2014) concerto for cello and electronics, 15'00"

For Mending (2011) song without words for cello & electronics, 5'00"

Cellosampler (2008) for cello and electronics, 5'40"


For Each Step (2011) song without words for violin & electronics, 4'45"

Cambrian Air (2011) for horn duo and electronics, 13'00"

Re: Noir (2009) for tenor saxophone and electronics, 9'40"
Concert version of dance score commissioned by choreographer Jacob Hobbs

Solo and Chamber Ensemble

The Snow Thawed And So Did We (2017) song without words for violin and piano, 4'00"

Here and Nowhere Else (2016) for percussion quartet, 10'00"


Roots (2015) for cello trio, 10'00"

Where the Path Ends (2015) for horn and piano, 7'00"

Blues (2014) for viola and piano, 7'20"

Briar Rose (2014) for sextet: flute, clarinet, vibraphone, piano, viola and cello, 6'20"

Without Words (2010) for quintet: 3 hangs, clarinet/bclar, two violins and cello, 8'45"
- arrangements available with percussion/piano replacing hangs


Large Ensemble/Orchestra

Albion Trails (2009) for octet: flute, clar/bclar, horn, vibraphone, harp, violin, viola, cello, 7'00"

Lodestar (2009) for sinfonietta, 6'40"


Piano Poems (2014) four electroacoustic miniatures, 7'40"

Miksang (2011) stereo acousmatic, composed to accompany a contemporary ballet by choreographer Letizia Mazzeo, 11'52"


The Madness of Lady Macbeth (2009) for soprano and piano, 4'00"


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Beauty From Nothing, for solo piano and electronics

Where does beauty come from? Did we invent it, or was it always here - a property of the universe? 

Composer David Ibbett and pianist Sophia Subbayya Vastek met by pure happenstance in late 2015 and very quickly recognized an artistic and philosophical kinship.  They have since brought Music of Reality to fruition – an event series that brings musicians, scientists, and other such creative minds together through a shared pursuit of discovery.  

The Beauty From Nothing EP is their debut recording and was the organic outpouring of their work in Music of Reality.  It is ultimately ecstatic music for piano and live electronics, through-composed by David, that explores the human, emotional response to learning about our origins and interconnectedness to all life.  

Visit the EP's Bandcamp Page