Luís Tinoco (b. 1969, Lisbon) read his First Degree in Composition at the Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa. He was then awarded scholarships by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation and the Centro Nacional de Cultura, to complete a Masters degree in Composition at the Royal Academy of Music, in London. He gained his PhD in Music Research at the University of York.

He has been writing and presenting new music programmes for radio since 2000, including 'A Century's Score' for Antena 2/RTP (Portuguese Radio and TV), from 2000 to 2003, and 'The Geography of Sound', since 2004. He also oversees the artistic direction, for the RTP, of the Young Musicians Prize and Festival, which is promoted by Antena 2.

Since 1999 he has lectured in Composition at the Escola Superior de Musica de Lisboa, where he also held the post of Vice Principal from 2011 to 2015. In 2016 Luís Tinoco was appointed Associate of the Royal Academy of Music (ARAM).

A wealth of appointments include Associate Composer at the Casa da Música for the 2017 season, Composer in Residence at the S.Carlos Theatre/National Opera House for the 2016/2017 season and Guest Composer with the Portuguese Symphonic Band in 2017

Tinoco's music has been performed and recorded on CD by the Arditti Quartet (Etïcetera); Gaillard Ensemble (Meridian and Deux-Elles); Le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne (ATMA Classique); John Wallace/Royal Scottish Academy Brass, (Deux-Elles); Apollo Saxophone Quartet, (Quartz); QuadQuartet (Quad); Vintage Quartet (Vintage) and by Pedro Carneiro (Deux-Elles and Etcetera). A CD devoted to his chamber works performed by the Ensemble Lontano, conducted by Odaline de La Martinez (Lorelt Records), was released in November 2005 at the Purcell Room / South Bank Centre, in London. In 2012, he released another CD on Naxos, with orchestral works recorded by the Orquestra Gulbenkian conducted by David Alan Miller. A new orchestral CD The Blue Voice of the Water was launched in 2018 (Odradek) with four works recorded by the Gulbenkian Orchestra, Portuguese Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony and the Casa da Música Porto Symphony, conducted by Susanna Mälkki, Pedro Neves, Ludovic Morlot and Martin André respectively. In 2019 Odradek released Archipelago, a CD entirely devoted to Tinoco’s percussion works, performed by Drumming GP.  Tinoco’s most recent album has been released by the new Next label.  It is entitled Alepo and other silences (Alepo e outros silêncios) and is exclusively dedicated to his chamber music written between 1998 and 2021.

Tinoco's chamber and orchestral music has been commissioned and programmed by orchestras such as the Gulbenkian Orchestra, Portuguese Symphony Orchestra, Porto Symphony Orchestra Casa da Música, Lisbon Metropolitan Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Radio France Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre National de Montpellier, Turin Philharmonic, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Albany Symphony Orchestra, São Paulo Symphony (OSESP) and the Brazilian Symphony Orchestra, among others. His stage works include Evil Machines, a music theatre project with libretto and stage direction by the former Monty Python Terry Jones; Paint Me, a chamber opera with libretto by Stephen Plaice and stage direction by Rui Horta; and the ballet Lidia for the Companhia Nacional de Bailado, with choreography by Paulo Ribeiro.

Recent projects include Work Songs (Canções de Trabalho) for voice and orchestra, premièred in April 2022 by the Brazilian singer Livia Nestrovsky and the Portuguese Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Osvaldo Ferreira, the saxophone concerto Kokyuu premièred by João Pedro Silva, at the Centro Cultural de Belém, Lisbon, with the Lisbon Metropolitan Orchestra conducted by Sylvain Gasançon, in December 2020, and also clarinet concerto Entre Silêncios,  which was first performed in 2019, by Horácio Ferreira with the Orquestra Gulbenkian. Tinoco is currently writing a new accordion concerto for João Barradas, which will receive its première in late 2023.

Photo credit: © Jorge Carmona