Pippa Murphy is an award-winning Scottish composer, sound designer and producer who writes for film, theatre, dance, choirs and orchestras.

She works with Folk, Jazz and Classical musicians as well as writers, film-makers and choreographers.

Pippa is known for her stylistic breadth, depth, and originality, as well as a unique cross-disciplinary understanding of storytelling and creative collaboration. Pippa’s works are multi-layered and multi-sensory. Some pieces draw on the full effects of combining sound design with orchestral instruments and voices. Her music has an immediacy, which is often dramatic and expressive. She is particularly interested in vocal techniques, phonemes and ‘found’ sound.

Pippa has directed many creative education projects throughout the world and has worked in many different musical and social contexts. She has devised pieces and trained teachers with the British Council in Scotland, Syria, Vietnam, Botswana, India, Iran and China. She has composed with asylum seekers in Glasgow, Manchester and Edinburgh and lectures at Edinburgh, St Andrews and Aberdeen Universities. She works regularly in cross-arts and multi-media collaborations and has worked with ensembles including Scottish Opera, Scottish Ensemble, BBC SSO, McFalls Chamber, Red Note Ensemble, SOUND Festival.

She was classically trained on piano, violin and percussion from an early age and completed her BMus, MA and PhD in composition at University of Birmingham. She lectures at Edinburgh University and guest lectures at RCS, Aberdeen and St Andrews University. She was Artist in Residence at the Scottish Parliament 2014. She was Vice-Chair of Sonic Arts Network (now Sound and Music) for 5 years and has written for Whitakers Almanac, Sunday Times and The Scotsman. She composed ‘Anamchara – Songs of Friendship‘ for Scottish Opera’s youth orchestra and chorus with writer Alexander McCall Smith for over 100 performers as part of the Commonwealth Games 2014 at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow. Her sound design for Lyceum Theatre’s production of Karine Polwart’s Wind Resistance in the Edinburgh International Festival has received 5 star reviews. Her music to POP-UP Duets presented by Janis Claxton Dance in the National Museums of Scotland has also been awarded 5-star reviews and been on an extensive world tour.


There is a lovely rhythm to the piece, with truly ingenious sound work by Pippa Murphy (which, among other things, merges live and recorded voice and music quite brilliantly).

Mark BrownScotland on Sunday on Wind Resistance

This is, at every level, a richly inventive, wonderfully perceptive work, danced with a persuasive humanity to a score you want to own…

Mary BrennanHerald Scotland on ‘POP-UP Duets’ Janis Claxton Dance

Murphy’s score, an intoxicating mix of folk, madrigal, Brittenesque arioso and pop-rhapsody, veers between lyrical soliloquising and expressive intensity – seamlessly connected and wonderfully atmospheric.

Andrew ClarkFinancial Times on Opera ‘Bolted’

The music, written by Pippa Murphy, was poised delicately between being appealing to listen to, cleverly orchestrated, and also something that showed everyone on stage, from child to professional, in the best possible light.

Rosenna EastHerald Scotland on Anamchara – Songs of Friendship