Tag Archives: composing

Meet the Contras

rarescale

Following a call by rarescale for music for the unusual and rather exciting combination of contrabass flute, contrabass clarinet and contrabassoon, Anna’s newly-composed work Contradanza has been selected for the ‘Meet the Contras’ concert programme this Thursday.

Thursday 21st June, 7:30pm
ADMISSION FREE
St James’ Church, Sussex Gardens, London W2 3UD
(nearest station: Paddington)

These three instruments are pretty much as low as you can go with woodwind. It’s all about the bass – and bass means big. They are definitely a sight to behold! In rarescale’s words:

The concert is FREE and we’d love to show you what our amazing low instruments can do!

The performance is part of Make Music Day UK. Full details here: www.facebook.com/events/2092882854304485/  Just turn up!

 

New: Carmichael setting for double choir

Waverley Turner Carmichael was an African-American poet born in Alabama in the late 19th century. His poem ‘Keep me, Jesus, keep me’ has an attractive
call-and-response structure which lends itself ideally to song and particularly to a setting for double choir. Indeed, a collection of Carmichael’s poems was published in 1918 under the title, “From the Heart of a Folk: A Book of Songs”.

 The repetitive use of language in this poem is almost meditative. This new setting reflects this in the serenity of the majority of the music: openly spaced harmonies, calmly lilting time signatures and frequent pauses to hear the voices resonate and fade. In this respect, the work is particularly suited to cathedral performance. The same music is used to set the two strophes, with recurrence of the line, “Keep me, Jesus, keep me,” forming an imploring refrain. Preview the score.Carmichael's "From the heart of a folk"

Choir & Organ magazine feature

I am the featured ‘New Music’ composer in the current issue of Choir & Organ magazine (Sept/Oct 2011). You can read their interview with me about how I came to composition, the challenges I have overcome, how I write and what it means to me.

Even better, for the next six months, Come Unto Me is published on the Choir & Organ magazine website and you can download it for free. Click here to download the score. You can also download composer’s notes. [07.08.2012 update: the score is no longer available to download from Choir & Organ. Please contact the composer if you would like to purchase the sheet music.]

I’d love to hear your feedback on both the article and the music – and do let me know if you plan to sing it with your choir!

A new commission

Hast thou not known? was premiered on Tuesday 17th May by the Royal College of Music Junior Department Chamber Choir at the beautiful Temple Church, London, in the finals of the King James Bible Composition Awards. It was a lovely evening of new choral music, each piece very different but equally exciting. I love listening to new music – you don’t often get the chance to hear much down in Devon!

The piece was one of four finalists in ‘Category B’ (a piece for professional choir) and received excellent feedback from the adjudicating panel, which included James MacMillan, Roxanna Panufnik and James O’Donnell, and from the audience.I am grateful to the choir and their conductor Joy Hill for doing such an excellent job. You can find out more about the event and the other composers here.

I am very pleased to announce that, as a result of the competition, I have been commissioned to write a new piece for Choir & Organ magazine. So although I didn’t win, I am thrilled to have been a finalist in this international competition. It is onwards and upwards, and I am ever more determined to write. I’m glad there’s another bank holiday on the horizon!

King James Bible Composition Awards: Final

I received some exciting news last week: ‘Hast thou not known?’ has been shortlisted for the final of the King James Bible Composition Awards! It will be performed alongside the seven other shortlisted works (three others in the same category as me and four in the other category) at the beautiful Temple Church, London, on 17th May at 6pm.

To find out more and book tickets to the concert, where the winners will be announced, visit www.kingjamesbibletrust.org/community/king-james-bible-composition-awards.

‘Hast thou not known?’ was written for category B of this competition:

CATEGORY B (in partnership with the Royal College of Music)
Adjudicator: James MacMillan, in conjunction with Grayston Ives, Roxanna Panufnik, William Mival and James O’Donnell.
Requirement:
An anthem for an experienced choir (such as a cathedral, well-resourced church or professional group) in up to eight parts (SATB), unaccompanied or with organ, suitable for use in worship. Duration must not exceed eight minutes.
Prize:

• £2,000
• Performance by the Choir of Westminster Abbey at the service to mark the completion of the 2011 celebrations on 16 November 2011
• Publication by Chester Novello music publishers

Information on Category A:

CATEGORY A (in partnership with the Royal School of Church Music)
Adjudicator:
Bob Chilcott, in conjunction with Malcolm Archer, Margaret Rizza, Tim Ruffer and Philip Wilby.

Requirement:
An anthem or song for up to four vocal parts (SATB) and keyboard, suitable for use in worship. This should be composed with non-professional, less experienced, performers in mind, and be adaptable to whatever resources might be available, for example, optional instruments. Duration must not exceed four minutes.
Prize:

• £2,000
• Performance by the Royal School of Church Music Millennium Youth Choir
• Publication by the RSCM