Born in 1946 Michael was taught at the Royal College by Bernard Stevens and Humphrey Searle. He was awarded an Octavia travelling scholarship to study in Italy with Roman Vlad.
After his studies in Italy he worked in dance with choreographers Jane Dudley and Anna Sokolow from the pioneering era of modern dance, and in more experimental work by Richard Alston, Siobhan Davies, Jackie Lansley and Fergus Early.
His concert debut as a solo pianist was at the Galerie Schwartzes Kloster in Freiburg, playing a concert mostly of first performances, Howard Skempton and Oliver Knussen as well as his own.
He also started to appear in Europe, firstly at the Gaudeamus Music Week in 1969 and thereafter until 1973, at Royan Festival (1974-6) and Donaueschingen.
In England his early work received encouragement from Ian Lake, Colin Mason and Martin Dalby. He has also been a member of the ensemble Suoraan (founded by James Clarke and Richard Emsley) and then its artistic director since the early 1970s and joined Ixion (founded and still directed by Andrew Toovey) in 1987 – playing piano and conducting for both these groups.
In the late 1980s he was invited by Justin Connolly to join the British section of the ISCM, and from 1990 until 1996 served as its President, travelling widely to Europe, Asia and Latin America.
Michael has been attached to C.O.M.A. (initially known as the East London Late Starters Orchestra) since its inception, and been in residence as composer to the Victorian College of the Arts (in Melbourne, Australia) and to the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras in Sydney.
Principl teaching has been at the Royal Academy of Music (London), Winchester College, the Katholieke Universiteit of Leuven (Belgium), and at the Universities of Sussex and (currently) Southampton.
Michael’s work has been recorded for CD by Metier, NMC, and Metronome in the UK, and Etcetera and BVHaast (Holland), CRI (USA), Artifact Music (Canada), and ABC Classics (Australia).