Part of being on research leave is that I am giving two key note conference papers this year, one in York in February and one in Warsaw in April. I am giving a paper entitled ‘Let us sleep now: The Rise of the British Secular Requiem’ at the York Conference on Church Music that is to be held at the University of York on the 13-15 February. I’ll be talking about Britten, Delius, Foulds, Poole and Jackson amongst others.
I will be presenting a paper entitled ‘Assimilating the Vernacular: James MacMillan’s Mass (2000)’ at the 10th Annual Musica Scotica Conference at the St Mungo Museum of Religious Life, Glasgow on Sunday 26 April. This is the first fruits of my early MacMillan research in preparation for writing The Music of James MacMillan for planned publication in 2019.
I am very excited to announce that the first CD of my work will be released on the 14 April 2014. The CD, entitled Phillip Cooke, Choral Music will be released on the Regent Records label and will be available to buy from all good record stores, the Regent Records website and from iTunes. It features 10 pieces of mine from 2008-12 all performed by the Chapel Choir of Selwyn College, Cambridge, Tim Parsons (organ) and Onyx Brass – all conducted by Sarah MacDonald. There will be two ‘launch’ events: the first at Aberdeen University on the 17 March where I will be playing selections from the CD and discussing my work (as well as selling CDs…), the second will be at the JAM concert at St Bride’s, Fleet Street in London on the 20 March where Selwyn and Onyx will perform one of the tracks, The Hazel Wood in a concert that also features Paul Mealor’s The Farthest Shore. I will be giving a pre-concert talk before the concert and selling CDs as well.
A picture of composers David Matthews and Tom Hyde with yours truly during the ‘Connecting Britten’ study day at Aberdeen University last week. A great couple of days, with great talks, concerts and meals.
I will be returning to my Alma Mater, Durham University on Tuesday 22 October to give a guest lecture on my work. The lecture will be entitled ‘Re-encountering the Pastoral’ and will focus on some recent pieces including Invocation, Lakesongs and The Hazel Wood. I fully expect to get a roasting from all those modernists.
The book that I have recently co-edited (and contributed two chapters) The Music of Herbert Howells will be published on the 18 October by Boydell and Brewer. Available from all good bookshops and online here.
On the 29 July I will be giving a lecture at the Three Choirs Festival in Gloucester on the music of Herbert Howells. I will be giving the lecture with my former Oxford colleague David Maw and we will be covering various aspects of Howells’s music including the evening canticle settings and Howells’s relationship with the fantasy. The talk will also act as a promotional event for our forthcoming book The Music of Herbert Howells which will be published by Boydell and Brewer in October.
If you happen to be in Aberdeen this Friday (07 June) do come along to hear the excellent Scottish Ensemble perform works by Britten, Shostakovich and Martin Suckling at The Music Hall at 19.30. If you are really keen, do come at 18.45 to hear me give a pre-concert talk entitled ‘Britten and Shostakovich: A Late Friendship’, where I will be briefly exploring the relationship between the two composers and the works featured in the concert. This is the first in a number of talks I will be giving around the country in the next six months including a talk on Howells’s Gloucester Service at the Three Choirs Festival (July) and Britten’s Missa Brevis in Aberdeen in November.