Daphne Oram


© Daphne Oram Trust, Goldsmiths Special Collections.

First London Concert of Electronic Music by British Composers, Queen Elizabeth Hall, London (1968)

© Daphne Oram Trust, Goldsmiths Special Collections.
Daphne Oram (1925—2003) was a British composer, inventor and electronic musician. Creator of the Oramics machine, a synthesizer that uses drawn images to control and create electronic sounds, she was the first composer to be commissioned to provide electronic music for the BBC (the sound score for Amphitryon 38, 1957). In 1958 she co-founded the world renowned BBC Radiophonic Workshop, acting as its first director and an indelible influence on the work produced throughout its history.

After she left the BBC in 1959, Oram created her own studio at her house, Tower Folly, where she worked fervently for the rest of her life. She produced a wide range of vital and exploratory works throughout her lifetime, including the soundtrack to the horror film The Innocents (1961), the soundtrack for 'Snow', directed by Geoffrey Jones and her own compositions including 'Still Point' and 'Episode Metallic'. Oram was also a researcher with an avid interest in the science and philosophy of sound. Her book An Individual Note, a number of research papers, and her numerous lectures and presentations around the UK provide a fascinating insight into her perspectives on sound.

After her death in 2003, composer and electronic musician Hugh Davies inherited her collected works and personal archives. After Davies's death in 2005, the collection moved to the Special Collections at Goldsmiths, University of London, where it is being accessioned and digitised.

The exhibition is drawn from never before seen materials from the collection, detailing Oram's seminal works, her attitude and aesthetic towards sound and her correspondence with luminaries of her era.

Exhibition curated by Tom Richards and James Bulley.

Free entry
Open daily
20—27 September 2012
See visiting for further details.