Category: Composition

Juggling

All musicians know how to juggle. When we begin our musical journeys, usually by learning an instrument, we juggle practice, scales and lessons with the rest of our lives.  Juggling is evident at a new level when you become a student, and then a full time professional – be it in music or otherwise. Personally,…
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Letting go: Let your music ‘be’

Do you have a favourite piece, or pieces, of music? Most people tend to. What about a favourite recording of said piece? It will most likely feature a specific group or ensemble, a particular arrangement, or your favourite conductor. One example of mine is In The Hall of the Mountain King from Peer Gynt, by…
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In depth Requiem – Libera me

At the moment I’m working on a range of projects simultaneously, and not all are ones I can share with the wider world. This is one of the reasons for the frustrating lack of posts. The Requiem is comprised of seven movements, only three of which are based on traditional requiem texts. This is obviously…
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Moving on: Hello 2012!

As the new year draws in, I have a habit of reviewing the one that’s just gone by – compositionally, at least – and drawing up my wish list for the year ahead. Here goes: Composing This year, I’ve paid particular attention to experimenting with my compositional voice and exploring new ideas, yet always aiming…
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A ‘new’ take on the ‘old’

Whilst doing my undergraduate degree, I took a module where I had to write a ‘contemporary’ piece that drew on a ‘contemporary’ compositional style, such as minimalism or serialism. In the end I chose both – a duet for two instruments (though only one performer!), with each using a different style. Although I’d dabbled with…
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Perkusi for solo flute

Ideas Earlier this year, Colchester New Music called for miniature scores for solo flute. Being a complete contrast from the other works I was working on at the time (the requiem, clarinet sonata and a work for viols), I thought it would be both an interesting challenge, and form a nice contrast with everything else…
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Thoughtscape I: Excerpts

Categorisation of musicians and composers is something I’m not keen on. It’s one thing if someone decides they want to specialise in just one particular area of music, but normally musicians and composers enjoy performing and writing a variety of types of music. I enjoy listening, performing and writing a variety of musical styles. This…
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Study for two violins and two violas

My previous post was about how I ‘find’ my ideas, and the techniques I use to do so. As you can probably tell, I’m not one who has a lack of ideas. That’s not to say they’re all good ideas, but nevertheless, the initial sparks come easily. When ideas come quite readily, you’re faced with…
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How to begin?

No matter what our profession, we all have the same dilemma at one point or another: how do we begin? Whether it’s an artist staring at a blank canvas, a programmer staring at an empty coding screen, or a writer with a blank notepad. I’m also sure that it’s a question many other people get…
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Circles for chamber orchestra

A while ago I posted my programme notes for Circles. A work for chamber orchestra (two oboes, bassoon, two horns, strings), The basic structure of the piece is based upon one I have used in several pieces over the last few years. Fundamentally, these consist of an A and B section, which alternate, and grow…
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