The WMA was founded by Alan Bush. Following a successful period as a student at the RAM he then studied composition with John Ireland. After a visit to Germany in 1929 and experiencing the Nazi Party's rise to power, his political convictions were re
affirmed and he moved from the Labour Party to the Communist Party. He received several doctorates of music during his lifetime. He continued as President of the WMA until his death; attending and teaching at the WMA Summer School of Music and conducting the
WMA Singers.. His influence still looms large within the WMA to this day.