LA CHASSE AUX PAPILLONS (2018)
Written as the main piece of my final year Bachelor's portfolio, La Chasse aux Papillons is inspired by L'artisan Parfumeur's attempt to bottle childhood memories of a bright sunny day. Vivacious, and care-free, butterflies in the form of violas dance through the sky, while birds - diving, and soaring - are given life through two pianos. Flutes and Clarinets play together like childhood friends. Humble, and steadfast trees take root through the rich cellos. Grey clouds can only momentarily dampen the spirits, before sunlight shines through again.
Two Clarinets in Bb
Two String Quartets (divisi.) with Integrated Viola Soloists
This piece is around 7 minutes in length.
Written in 2018 and expanded in 2019, this choral piece is one out of a set of three choral pieces with texts by Sara Teasdale (1884-1933). Deeply reflective, this piece looks inwards, drawing on Teasdale's notion that Peace is a moving, flowing concept as opposed to a moment of stillness.
Two Soprano Soloists
SONGS OF LIGHT (2019-2020)
"These four choruses, written for the North of Ireland composer Tyler Welton-Stewart between summer 2019 and spring the following year, explore different meanings of light. The first is a memorial poem for a much loved and honoured teacher, and hints at the vast and spreading effect one good life can have so many others; the second is a celebration of spring, how each year reignites light. The third poem speaks of the way that people can be light to each other in times of deep darkness, and the forth and final poem speaks of the light in the deep of memory, a love deep in the past of an elderly poet; memory flares once more in a place where love was once present, and then fades out into the night."
Euan Tait, Cas-gwent, Gwent, Cymru, 2020.
WE GO FORWARD (2020-2021)
Contemplative and pensive music is something I've always had an affinity for and gravitated towards. We Go Forward is an orchestral ode to taking things as they come to us. Dealing with highs, and lows. What is behind us stays behind. We Go Forward.
This piece was initially inspired by artist's Shen Comix (@shenanigansen) piece of the same name.
Two Clarinets in Bb
Six French Horns
THOSE GREAT GIFTS IN SMALL PACKAGES (2020)
Written for the birth of my niece Lexi, born the ninth of November, 2020.
Two Clarinets in Bb
Two French Horns
Trumpet in Bb
A collection of contemplative pieces to provide a gentle foundation to embrace stillness, to embrace solitude, and to take time to deeply acknowledge emotions.
1 - Mono No Aware: for strings
2 - Saudade: for solo piano
3 - The Birds Are Singing Again: for solo piano
LE FLEUR (2021)
Written for Anna, and Philipp - owners of the beautiful 18th century Château Gonneville sur Honfleur. A labour of love, the couple are bringing their new home back to life while chronicling the struggles and joys on their Instagram, and YouTube channel "How To Renovate A Chateau".
The joy, and optimism I feel from their restoration is deeply inspiring.
EPITAPH FOR A COLLAPSING STAR (2021)
Written for clarinettist Laoise Kavanagh, this work for clarinet and strings is an elegy for the gradual demise of stars. Fading over the course of millions of years, expelling their energy in pulses before collapsing. These beacons of light radiate for hundreds of millions of years before the majority of them dying quietly, nobly, while others explode in a violent supernova. I wanted to acknowledge them.
Laoise brings out the best in the clarinet - the expressive, rich tone one expects from the instrument. Her playing is filled with soul, with intense focus, and her expressive range is masterful. Knowing I was writing this for such passionate performer, this piece is laden with leaps, soaring lines, often floating above the strings, and carrying over the bar
Clarinet in Bb
I AM MADE OF MEMORIES (2022)
Inspired by Madeline Miller's stunning novel The Song of Achilles, this symphonic poem tells the story of Achilles and Patroclus, from their early friendship until their tragic deaths. Love, anger, grief, and pride each play their role in this tragic greek re-telling. Each movement is inspired by moments in the novel, and are as such titled with quotes.
I. Honey in the Sun
II. This. this, and this.
II. Name one Hero who was Happy
III. I Feel I Could Eat the World Raw
IV. I Would Know Him in Death, at the End of the World.
V. Philtatos, Most Beloved.
VI. The Spear I do Not See Comes From Behind
VII. View from the Shore
VIII. He Was Worth Ten of You
IX. Have you no Memories? I am Made of Memories. "Then Speak."
X. "Go," she says. "He waits for you."
XI. He is Half of my Soul, as the Poets Say.
EPILOGUE. A Hundred Golden Urns Pouring Out of the Sun.
(Art by @Catbishonen)
AN EXAMINATION OF MISOGYNY IN NINETEENTH-CENTURY BEL CANTO OPERA (2018/19)
with specific reference to Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor, and Bellini's I Puritani.
This project examines misogyny, and insanity in nineteenth-century bel canto opera with reference to two renowned mad scenes and consider whether these scenes are inherently misogynistic. The operas that will be discussed are Donizetti’s renowned Lucia di Lammermoor (1835) and Bellini’s I Puritani (1834). Society at the time of these opera’s premieres will be examined to further question if these scenes are a by-product of a macabre interest, or a device of female oppression.
CHANGING AESTHETICS: THE FEMALE VOICE IN OPERA (2020)
Chronicling the development of women’s role in vocal music throughout Europe between 1200-1900.
This on-going research project seeks to expand on my previous study of bel canto opera. This paper will investigate how, and why women rose to prominence in classical vocal music. The origins of Western choral music shall be examined to figure out what occurred for female musicians to participate, and to be accepted. Discussing the popular “castrati” singers, and their decline. The concept of the diva will also be examined alongside contemporary society in the baroque era to bridge to answer how female singers initially were ostracised from musical circles, to being widely celebrated around the globe.
IN PERSUIT OF GOD’S MUSIC (2022)
Exploring the transformation of sacred music during the English Reformation.
This project will examine the evolution of music of the Tudor court - particularly that of Sacred music - before, during, and following the aftermath of the Protestant Reformation. Stylistic changes in music, notation, composers in favour, to the language used in the sacred texts for choral settings will be dissected in order to note the continuing impact this revolutionary event had on English music.
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