Graduate profile
Johnny Yates

Johnny Yates

"The postgraduate course at Surrey gave me the time to build a portfolio of compositional work and get guidance from a variety of professional tutors to prepare my skills for the music industry."

Course
Music (Composition) MMus
Graduation year
2013

Why did you choose to study music at Surrey?

The MMus Music course covers many avenues across all categories in music, allowing me to build my skills in composition, production, music theory and performance, as well as having the time to prepare my portfolio to pursue my career in music for film and television.

The best things about my course were the diverse range of modules and talented creatives I got to collaborate beside on multiple performances and productions. The opportunity to perform my compositions in a room full of talented musicians and composers at a dozen concerts held at the music department’s concert hall was also truly inspirational.

What do you do now and what do you find the most enjoyable about your line of work? 

I’m a composer for TV and film. I love waking up to write music for screen and being able to tell the story with the functionality of music expression. I’ve had the privilege to compose music for numerous clients including HSBC, C4 Formula 1, Movistar TV series Hope and more.

"My friends, lecturers and music collaborators helped identify my ability to enjoy composition for screen."

How did your time at Surrey help you choose what career to go into? 

My friends, lecturers and music collaborators always admired my work for film music and helped identify my ability to enjoy composition for screen.

The postgraduate course at Surrey gave me the time to build a portfolio of compositional work and get guidance from a variety of professional tutors to prepare my skills for the music industry.

What are your top tips for students aspiring to work in your profession?

Determination, patience, hard work, network and prepare yourself for failure - it’s a natural experience but use it to learn from and realise how you can overcome it to succeed next time.

Finally, do you have any other comments you’d like to offer about your time at Surrey or life after university? 

The community, support and facilities are like no other. Whether you’re performing your song, presenting a lecture, researching for your dissertation; use every opportunity that comes your way to build your strengths and weaknesses to prepare yourself for the music industry. Building relationships will open more doors for you and show your craft to make people aware of your passion.

 

Discover more about our courses in music and sound recording, including our MMus Music (Composition).

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