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New Works and Recordings

August 12th, 2017 No comments

I’ve recently uploaded some new pieces and recordings. The new works are the Missa Sancti Albanus, an unaccompanied mass setting (for SSATB) and the Three Gaelic Songs (for SAB) – both to be performed later this year. I’ve also uploading recordings of Nunc Dimittis (2017), The Three Ravens (2017) and the Evening Service (2009) from recent performances.

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Promotion to Senior Lecturer

July 10th, 2017 No comments

I was very honoured to find out this week that I had been promoted to Senior Lecturer at the University of Aberdeen. I have been at the university for the past four and a half years and greatly enjoy working in such a thriving music department. Reader next!

Categories: Lectures / Pre-Concert Talks Tags:

‘Missa Brevis’ Performances in Oxford

July 8th, 2017 No comments

The Cathedral Singers of Christchurch Cathedral, Oxford will give two performances of my Missa Brevis (2011) in July in the cathedral – on the 6th and 9th, conducted by James Potter. The choir gave the first performance of the SATB version in January this year.

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On Being a Craftsman or Artist?

June 29th, 2017 No comments

Earlier this year I was proof-reading a new book on the Welsh composer William Mathias, a composer for whom I have a great amount of respect. Amongst the many things that struck me about this book was the continued reference to Mathias as a ‘craftsman’, someone who ‘would have been happy to have put a brass plate outside his studio with ‘composer’ on it, much as the lawyer or dentist do in their professions.’ The idea of the composer as a craftsman really got me thinking and got me assessing my own work and my own difficult relationship with the profession of composing – it also got me thinking about the perceived pejorative connotations of this term and whether one can willingly use it in a positive and constructive manner. Read more…

Categories: Opinion Tags:

Premiere of ‘The King and His Shadow’

June 27th, 2017 No comments

This weekend sees the premiere of my new ‘pop-up’ opera, The King and His Shadow, in Aberdeen as part of the city’s ‘Silver City Stories’ weekend. My six minute opera (to a libretto by Peter Davidson) briefly describes the raising of the standard to proclaim James VII in 1715 and will take place at various times across the weekend in the city centre. The work will be performed by students from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and Aberdeen University and is directed by Bill Bankes-Jones.

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‘O sacrum convivium’ Finalist in Competition

June 23rd, 2017 No comments

Not sure whether it is much to shout about, but my work O sacrum convivium (2012) was one of 16 finalists for the ORTUS International New Music Competition, run by the Khorikos Choir in New York. It didn’t make the final 10, but apparently there were 600 submissions, so I suppose that is something…

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Irish Premiere of ‘The Three Ravens’

June 22nd, 2017 No comments

The female voice choir, Dulciana, will give the Irish premiere of my arrangement of The Three Ravens this Friday (23/06/2017) at Sandford Church in Dublin. They will give a second performance at the Freemason’s Hall in Dublin on Monday (26/06/2017). Good luck to all involved.

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Premiere of ‘Nunc Dimittis’ in Exeter

May 20th, 2017 No comments

This Sunday (21/05/2017) will see the premiere of my new motet Nunc Dimittis performed by the University of Exeter Chapel Choir, conducted by my former PhD student Ed Jones at the Mary Harris Memorial Chapel. The compline service will also feature music by Reger and Mealor.

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New CD Recording

May 8th, 2017 No comments

My short Christmas carol Susanni (2015) will be recorded later this year in Manchester for release on the Prima Facie label in time for Christmas. The CD, entitled The Silver Stars at Play, will feature works by many contemporary composers including Peter Maxwell Davies, John McCabe, Cheryl Francis-Hoad and my own PhD student Sarah Rimkus.

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Performances in Northumberland

April 17th, 2017 No comments

Later this month I shall be travelling down to beautiful Northumberland to hear a performance of my Three Partsongs (2008-2012) that will be given by the Coquetdale Chamber Choir. The choir will perform the pieces in two concerts, firstly in Wooler (21/04) and then in Rothbury (25/04), the latter of which I’ll attend. The choir will be conducted by my old composition tutor John Casken and I’m looking forward to hearing this ambitious amateur choir perform the pieces.

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