Laurence Crane (born 1961, Oxford) writes music largely for the concert hall, though his output includes pieces that were initially composed for film, radio, theatre, dance and installation. He studied at Nottingham University, where his composition teachers were Peter Nelson and Nigel Osborne.
A constant preoccupation has been the use of commonplace musical objects in new structural relationships. Chords and intervals in their most basic state, arpeggios, drones, cadences, fragments of scales and short stepwise melodies are presented in regular and irregular repetitions or juxtapositions that are partly intuitive and partly structured according to a formal scheme. He attempts to find a new context for these objects, to discover fresh beauty in the familiar and the ordinary.
Between 1985 and 2003 he concentrated almost exclusively on writing miniatures; short, concise pieces that are invariably focussed on a single idea. More recently, he has developed an interest in making longer works and many compositions completed since 2003 are of more extended duration. These pieces explore the possibility of building a large-scale structure using the same type of static and reductive musical material that was examined in the miniatures.