Basil Considine is a composer-playwright, conductor and musicologist. He is active in Boston’s musical and theatrical scenes and teaches at Boston University.
A native of the Boston area, Basil currently resides in Brookline, MA. His work for the stage and church take him across the United States, and musicological pursuits regularly see him straddling both sides of the Atlantic Ocean. He lived in Mauritius from 2011-2012 to conduct ethnographic research for his doctoral dissertation. From 2006-2012, he was the Artistic Director of the Reduced Spice Opera Company of Brookline, an organization that he co-founded. He has conducted ethnographic field research on music in Hawaii and Mauritius.
Basil began his musical studies at the age of 4, as a violist. He attended the Boston Archdiocesan Choir School, Suzuki School of Newton, the New England Conservatory of Music, the University of San Diego, and recently completed a doctorate in music (historical musicology and ethnomusicology) and drama at Boston University, writing a musical and military history of the island of Mauritius for his dissertation. He gave his concert debut in Boston’s Symphony Hall at age 11, as the boy soprano soloist with the BSO in John Corigliano‘s Of Rage and Remembrance. His concert appearances have included performances with the Boston Pops, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, Marine Band San Diego, and the Boston Boy Choir. He holds degrees in liturgical music, piano & vocal performance, composition, liturgical studies, and musicology.
Basil’s teachers include Simon Carrington (conducting), Christopher Adler and Samuel Headrick (composition), and Lydia Diamond (playwriting). He studied Medieval and Renaissance music with Sean Gallagher, Marianne Pfau, Joshua Rifkin, and Jeremy Yudkin; ethnomusicology with Steven Cornelius and Brita Heimarck; church history and liturgy with Christopher Brown and Karen Westerfield Tucker; historiography with Barbara Diefendorf and Andrew Bacevich; music and drama with James Winn; opera with Ron Shaheen; and contemporary music with David Kopp and Andrew Shenton.
In August 2013, Basil was a selected artist for the 2013 Freedom Art Retreat organized by Playwrights’ Commons.
During June 2013, Basil attended the National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute Empires and Interactions across the Early Modern World, 1400-1800 at Saint Louis University in St. Louis, MO.
On 24 May 2013, Basil delivered an invited lecture entitled “Liszt, the Symphonic Poem, and Wagner’s Mature Style” at Mercer University’s Townsend School of Music in Macon, GA.
On 6 April 2013, Basil presented the paper “Challenges to Greco-Roman Concepts of Music in Marin Mersenne’s Questions Harmoniques” at the Renaissance Society of America’s Annual Meeting in San Diego, CA.
On 1 February 2013, Basil presented the paper “Music and the Pirates of Madagascar” at the Winter Meeting of the New England Chapter of the American Musicological Society at Tufts University in Medford, MA.
On 4 November 2012, Basil presented the paper “The Rise and Fall of Classical Music in Colonial Mauritius, ‘The Little Paris’ of the Indian Ocean” at the Joint Meeting of the American Musicological Society, Society for Ethnomusicology, and Society for Music Theory (AMS/SEM/SMT) in New Orleans.
On 8 October 2012, Basil presented the paper “Re-Attributing London-Royal College of Music MS1070: New Technologies and Insights” at Boston University’s Medieval and Renaissance Symposium.
On 3 July 2012, Basil presented the paper “Identity in Mauritius: the Role of Government Policy and Tourism in the Formation of ‘National Culture’” at the International Musicological Society Congress in Rome.
On 29 June 2012, Basil presented the paper “Music, Musicians, and Aspirational Marketing in the Tourism Industry of Mauritius” as part of the Current Trends in Ethnomusicology 4 Doctoral Workshop in Hildesheim.
Basil conducted field research on the island of Mauritius from 2011-2012.
On 17 September 2011, Basil presented the paper “La Fille du Régiment and the Construction of French Patriotism and Identity in the Inter-Empire Period” at the conference VIVA V.E.R.D.I. in Pistoia.
On 3 September 2011, Basil presented the paper ” Confrontation and Accommodation in the Battle of Séga and Christian Song in Mauritius” at the conference Christian Congregational Music: Local and Global Perspectives at Ripon College Cuddesdon.
On 26 March 2011, Basil presented the paper “The Tudor Rose, Anne Boleyn, and Heraldry in the Attribution of Royal College of Music Manuscript” at the Renaissance Society of America’s Annual Meeting in Montreal.
Basil conducted field research on hula and tourism in Hawaii during 2010 and 2011.
On 21 April 2010, Basil directed the world premier of Simple Gifts: A Copland Opera, by Aaron Krerowicz.
Basil travels the world regularly in search of music manuscripts, mezzo-sopranos and gelati.