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Music Supervisor

Brian May

Brian May CBE, PhD, FRAS is a founding member of Queen, a world‑renowned guitarist, songwriter, producer and performer, also a Doctor of Astrophysics, 3D stereoscopic photographic authority, and a passionate advocate and campaigner for animal rights.

As an accomplished astronomy student working towards a PhD, Brian put his academic studies on hold when Queen’s popularity first exploded. Over the following four decades, the band enjoyed worldwide success with a musical catalogue that consistently tops popularity polls and sees Queen remain the most successful albums act in UK chart history.

Brian penned 22 of Queen’s top 20 hit singles including ‘We Will Rock You’, which, as well as being namesake to the worldwide hit musical written with Ben Elton and now seen by over 14 million people, was recently declared the most‑played song at American sporting events (BMI). Reported to have been played over 550,000 times during the London 2012 Olympic Games, ‘We Will Rock You’ was performed live by Brian and Roger Taylor, accompanied by Jessie J, during the closing ceremony, viewed by a TV audience estimated at one billion. Another memorable, global, live appearance was Brian playing his own arrangement of ‘God Save the Queen’ from the roof of Buckingham Palace during the 2002 golden jubilee celebrations.

With a great love for live performance, having played over 700 concerts with Queen, in 2004 Brian and Roger celebrated their induction into the UK Music Hall of Fame by performing with former Free/Bad Company vocalist, Paul Rodgers. A triumphant 55‑date world tour with Paul as guest vocalist followed, the first Queen tour in 20 years, along with the studio album The Cosmos Rocks, supported by a second world tour and the release of two live DVDs and a live album. 2012 saw a return of Queen onstage, this time with guest vocalist Adam Lambert, a partnership, which delighted fans and critics unanimously.

As an accomplished solo artist, Brian toured his highly successful albums - 1992’s Back to the Light, featuring ‘Too Much Love Will Kill You’ and ‘Driven by You’, both Ivor Novello Award winners, and 1998’s Another World.

No stranger to the theatrical world, Brian wrote and performed the music for the 1987 and 1990 productions of Macbeth at the London Riverside Studios and he has regularly contributed to the live performance work of his wife, Anita Dobson. Brian delved into the world of film scoring when Queen became the first rock group to score a major film, Flash Gordon. Definitive music for Highlander followed, an opera for Steve Baron’s Pinocchio, and a complete film soundtrack created by Brian for the 1999 French art film Furia. He has contributed to a number of soundtracks including The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Mission: Impossible II and Spider‑Man 2, as well as writing themes for several TV shows.

Brian is proud to be an ambassador for the Mercury Phoenix Trust, the charity set up in memory of Freddie Mercury, which has channelled over $15 million to support global AIDS projects. Their commitment to AIDS awareness led to Queen’s driving involvement in the 46664 campaign, alongside the Nelson Mandela Foundation founded in October 2003, with concert performances in South Africa and London. Brian also performed with Armenian duduk player Jivan Gasparyan in the 2005 extraordinary 46664 ARCTIC concert in Tromsø, Norway, 200 miles inside the Arctic Circle.

Brian’s songs and distinctive guitar style, produced from his revered homemade ‘Red Special’ guitar using a sixpence as a plectrum, continue to inspire a diverse genre of international artists. His wealth of guest contributions range from playing on Michael Kamen’s 2002 Winter Olympics theme to producing the number‑one Comic Relief hit ‘The Stonk’, and, most recently, recording and performing both with Lady Gaga, and with Dappy on his hit ‘Rockstar’.

And of course, Brian’s creative forces continue, partnering co‑star Kerry Ellis, with whom he wrote, arranged, performed and produced Kerry‘s stunning debut album, Anthems. Brian and Kerry’s second UK tour took a departure from their 2011 larger‑scale Anthems tour to favour an intimate acoustic evening, with Kerry singing and Brian accompanying on both guitar and vocals. The November 2012 Born Free tour promoted awareness of Virginia McKenna’s Born Free Foundation, and was revived in June 2013 to herald the UK release of the live album Acoustic by Candlelight and celebrate Brian and Kerry’s single release ‘The Kissing Me Song’.

As a lifelong advocate of animal welfare, Brian set up the Save Me campaign, named after his song, to champion all, but predominantly British, wildlife. Save Me works at grass‑roots level in conjunction with a local animal rescue and rehoming centre, as well as being a player alongside the major animal welfare groups. Brian has been a leading inspiration in the fight against fox hunting and the ongoing fight against the UK badger cull. Details of the work of Save Me can be found at‑ and also at

Brian has always retained his keen passion for astronomy and, in 2006, after a 30‑year break, he returned to astrophysics and his doctoral thesis. Already the recipient of honorary degrees from the universities of Hertfordshire, Exeter and Liverpool John Moores, upon submission of his updated thesis on the motions of interplanetary dust, Brian achieved his full PhD degree from Imperial College, London, in 2007. He subsequently accepted a post of visiting researcher to continue his work in astronomy and is currently chancellor of Liverpool John Moores. 2006 saw Brian coauthor his first book, Bang!: the Complete History of the Universe, with Sir Patrick Moore and Dr Chris Lintott, followed in 2012 with the release of a greatly anticipated sequel, The Cosmic Tourist.

Another long‑term interest in 3D photography led to the publication of Brian’s second book. Co‑authored with Elena Vidal, A Village Lost and Found is an authoritative study of the work of master 1850s stereo photographer T R Williams, complete with a stereoscope designed by Brian himself. He is currently co‑authoring a book on French Diableries, due for publication in October 2013. More information on this and all matters stereoscopic are available at Brian’s dedicated website,

Brian was appointed in 2005 for ‘services to the music industry and for his charity work’ and is patron to a number of charities, and also a vice‑president of the RSPCA. Brian enjoys interacting with his fans, who can enjoy updates on his work and thoughts via his

website at
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