Tom Phillips - Irma: an opera

by soundukarts in London, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 22nd June 2017 we successfully raised £2,290 with 21 supporters in 28 days

Help us create a unique artwork that marks Tom Phillips RA’s 80th birthday in his local neighbourhood of Peckham

by soundukarts in London, England, United Kingdom

Sound UK is a music charity developing a major new project to mark the 80th birthday of one of Britain’s most treasured artists


We need your support to produce the first multimedia production of Royal Academy artist Tom Phillips’ Irma: an opera at South London Gallery this September. An exquisite miniature opera and audio visual installation, Irma is drawn from his masterpiece A Humument, which he recently completed after 50 years. This unique production celebrates Phillips’ extraordinary output in art and music.

Tom Phillips RA: Phillips has had major exhibitions in national galleries, painted figures such as John Gielgud and Iris Murdoch and created works for the Imperial War Museum, Westminster Abbey and Westminster Cathedral. His work can also be seen on the streets of Peckham where he has lived and worked for most of his life. You may even own one of his artworks; the Benjamin Britten 50p piece. 

Tom Phillips in his Peckham studio 

In the 1960s, Phillips was at the centre of the vibrant art school scene where music and art collided.  He brought over key composers of that era to the UK – Morton Feldman, John Cage, performed with Cornelius Cardew - and even taught Brian Eno, who he introduced to ideas that had a great influence on Eno’s music.  This landmark event recognises Phillips’ work as a composer and wider influence on the world of music.

Excerpt from Irma: an opera full score 2014

The Creative team: Sound UK is working with one of the UK’s most gifted opera designer / directors Netia Jones and her company Lightmap, with music director Anton Lukoszevieze and his leading ensemble Apartment House. 

“Netia Jones is the most imaginative director of opera working in Britain today" The Observer

“One of the most innovative and exciting chamber ensembles in Europe" Royal Philharmonic Society on Apartment House

We need YOU to be part of Irma!

We have already raised the majority of our funding with the generous support of Arts Council England and Hinrichsen Foundation. We are also grateful for major in kind support from South London Gallery, where Phillips first showed his work as a student. 

YOU can play a key role in Phillips’ new artwork. We need to raise £5,000 to help pay for rehearsals and the creation of the video for this extraordinary artwork.

To thank you for your invaluable support, we have put together a selection of unique rewards based on Irma characters – view by scrolling up on the right of this page - including an exclusive limited edition print created by Tom Phillips and mementos of his work.

Please visit our website for more information on Irma

Image of Tom Phillips limited edition print - Irma: Our Lamplit History

Paper size h28.4cm x w21cm
Limited edition of 50

A unique print created by Tom Phillips in support of the world premiere full version of his opera Irma, at South London Gallery, September 2017, directed / designed by Netia Jones, musical direction Anton Lukoszevieze, performed by Apartment House with video by Lightmap.

Digital print with silkscreen 2017
All prints are sent signed and numbered by the artist.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£25 or more

£25 Reward

Art officer - listed as a supporter of Irma production on website

£50 or more

3 of 40 claimed

£50 Reward

Nurse - Irma 2017 production poster – produced just for this show - listed as a supporter of Irma production on website

£100 or more

2 of 15 claimed

£100 Reward

Grenville – signed full Irma score by creative team - listed as a supporter of Irma production on website

£360 or more

4 of 10 claimed

£360 Reward

Irma - unique print created by Tom Phillips in support of Irma at South London Gallery (limited edition of 50) + pair of tickets to first performance + meet the creative team + listed as a supporter of Irma production on website

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