Stephen McNeff announced as new BASCA Chairman

The British Academy of Songwriters, Composers & Authors (BASCA) is delighted to announce that award-winning composer Stephen McNeff has been appointed as its new Chairman.

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The British Academy of Songwriters, Composers & Authors (BASCA) is delighted to announce that award-winning composer Stephen McNeff has been appointed as its new Chairman.

Stephen studied composition at the Royal College of Music and undertook post-graduate research at the University of Exeter.  He began his career working in theatres throughout Britain and became Associate Director at the University of Manchester’s Contact Theatre.

Although specialising in opera and music for the theatre and voice he has written important instrumental pieces and a large range of works for wind ensembles of various kinds.

Accolades include a Mavor Moore Award for his opera The Secret Garden, a Scotsman award at the Edinburgh Festival for his opera Aesop and British Composer Award for his opera, Tarka the Otter to name but a few.

He worked last year with the Welsh National Opera and his latest work, The Darkling Serenade, for the British Clarinet Ensemble, premiered in Madrid this week.

Stephen takes over the role from Simon Darlow who has stepped down from the position after serving as Chairman since 2013.


I’m very proud to be the new Chair of BASCA and to work with such fantastic colleagues and staff. I’m looking forward to broad coalition of genres all working together.

Simon Darlow

It is my pleasure to welcome Stephen McNeff as the new Chair of BASCA.

He brings with him gravitas, considered thinking and good humour. I look forward to working closely with him supporting his vision for composers and songwriters.

Vick Bain, BASCA CEO

BASCA wishes to thank Simon Darlow for all his hard work and contribution to BASCA and all its members.

For more information on Stephen McNeff please visit:

For more information on BASCA please email:


The British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA) is the voice for music writers. BASCA campaigns in the UK, Europe and throughout the world. So that we may continue to do this, it is important that we can count the best songwriting and composing talent amongst our members. Whilst we are well known for putting on the British Composer Awards, the Gold Badge Awards and The Ivors every year, there is far more to us than these events. We are the independent professional association representing music writers in all genres, from songwriting, through to media, contemporary classical and jazz. We are entirely self-funding and rely on the continuing support of our members to carry on our work. We can trace our history back 70 years. Our members include Sir Paul McCartney, Dizzee Rascal, Michael Nyman, Gary Barlow, David Arnold, Sir Elton John, Imogen Heap, Howard Goodall, John Powell, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Kate Bush, Chris Martin, and many more.

About PRS for Music

Here for music since 1914, PRS for Music is a world-leading music collective management organisation representing the rights of more than 175,000 talented songwriters, composers and music publishers. Redefining the global standard for music royalties, PRS for Music ensures songwriters and composers are paid whenever their musical compositions and songs are streamed, downloaded, broadcast, performed and played in public. 

For 110 years it has grown and protected the rights of the music creator community, paying out royalties with more accuracy, transparency and speed. In 2023, PRS for Music paid out £943.6m in royalties and collected a record £1.08 billion in revenues.

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