Composer and broadcaster Michael Berkeley (aka Lord Berkeley of Knighton) will be visiting Aberdeen University this week (29-30/10) for a two day visit. Michael will be giving tutorials and a lecture as well as attending a concert of his works (and some by his father) given by the University Contemporary Music Group (of which I am the director). I will be discussing some of these works with Michael during the concert.
November marks the beginning of a busy end to the year with four premieres in the next two months and several regional premieres as well. The month begins with the premiere of my new organ work Epitaph (2014) given by Roger Williams as part of the Sound Festival at the King’s College Chapel in Aberdeen on the 4th. The 10th and 11th has back to back performances of Evening Service (2009) firstly by the Girls’s Choir and Lay Clerks of Ely Cathedral, then by the Chapel Choir of Selwyn College, Cambridge, both conducted by Sarah MacDonald. The month finishes with the premiere of Threnos (2014) my new work for choir and cello, performed by the University Chamber Choir, conducted by Paul Mealor again in the King’s College Chapel at 19.30 on the 24th.
This Sunday (31/08/2014) will see another performance of my Morning Service (Te Deum and Jubilate, 2010-11) given by the St Paul’s Cathedral based female choir Aurora Nova. The performance will take place at the Matins service at 10.15 and will be conducted by Patrick Craig.
I’ve finally got round to putting up some recently composed pieces. They are as follows: Epitaph – an organ work for Roger Williams that will be performed in November, Exsultet – another organ work premiered at the LFCCM in May this year, Praeludium – for organ pedals, premiered by Ed Jones at St Andrew’s Cathedral, Aberdeen in July, Third Service [Ely Cathedral] – a setting of the evening canticles which will be premiered by Ely Cathedral Girl’s Choir early next year and Threnos – a work for choir and cello which will be premiered by the Aberdeen University Chamber Choir in November. There are various recordings and YouTube videos that I’ve put up, though many of these have been superseded by the CD release. More to follow soon. PAC
Organist Ed Jones will give the premiere of my piece for pedals only Praeludium (2013) at St Andrew’s Cathedral, Aberdeen this Saturday (19 July) in a recital inlcuding works by Bach and Vivaldi. Ed will also give another performance of my early organ work Elegy (2003) at Ely Cathedral during evensong on Friday 08 August. PAC
On Wednesday (14/05) the year of organ music continues with the world premiere of my new work Exsultet commissioned by the London Festival of Contemporary Church Music and performed in this year’s festival by Leon Charles. The service is to be braodcast on BBC Radio 3 Choral Evensong and features new works by Anthony Pitts, Roxanna Panufnik and Alexander Campkin. The service is broadcast at 15.30. Exsultet takes the opening words of the Easter Vigil as its inspiration, but more importantly it features a large quotation from a recent pop song – a free CD and a packet of biscuits if anyone recognises it!
It appears performances of organ music are like buses, you wait for one then several turn up at once. Assistant Director of Music at Worksop College (and former Queen’s College Organ Scholar) Charlotte Phillips will perform Elegy (2003) in the College Chapel on Wednesday 07 May at 19.30 in a recital of European Organ Music. There are further performances of Elegy planned later this year.
On Saturday 26 April, the distinguished organist Roger Williams will perform my early organ work Elegy (2003) at Settle Parish Church at 19.30. Roger has commissioned a new organ piece from me, Epitaph (I like cheery organ music…) which he will premiere in Aberdeen in November as part of the Sound Festival 2014. This is the beginning of a busy year of organ music for me, with another premiere in May of a new piece Exsultet as part of the London Festival of Contemporary Church Music.
The excellent Chapel Choir of King’s College, Aberdeen University will perform my motet O sacrum convivium in Canterbury Cathedral on Sunday 6 April in the morning service. They will then perform the same motet, alongside two other motets of mine (Veni Sancte Spiritus and O lux beata Trinitas) in an evening concert at St Leonard’s Church, Hythe on the 10 April.
This coming week is an important one for me with various performances and other events. It begins today with a performance of my first setting of the Evening Service (2009) by the Chapel Choir of Selwyn College, Cambridge in evensong in Cambridge tonight (13/03). Selwyn then take the piece to St Paul’s Cathedral in London for evensong there on Monday (17/03). Monday is also the launch of my new CD at Aberdeen University where I will be playing selections of the disc and talking about the recording. On Thursday (20/03) my 2012 work The Hazel Wood will be performed by Selwyn with Onyx Brass and Simon Hogan (organ) at St Bride’s, Fleet Street, London as part of the JAM concert. This concert will also be an unofficial launch concert where I will be giving a pre-concert talk and selling copies of the CD. I then travel to Chester on Saturday (22/03) to hear the Chester Music Society Choir perform the Bach Mass in B Minor – I shall begin writing the new oratorio for the choir later this year. PAC