Monday 10 July 2006

It never stops

Having vowed I was going to have a rest from planning concerts, after my recent Chelsea Festival Concert coming on top of the concerts we did in March, I am already having ideas about possible future concerts. But I'm going to try very hard to not act on any of the ideas. At least just yet. Its just that events and things conspire against me.

I've been thinking of doing a programme, with a small group of people and wanted a hook to hang the programme on. This got me thinking about verse anthems and Orlando Gibbons. It turns out that a friend as access to a selection of Gibbons anthems and recently gave me scores to 3 of them, they'd been edited by a friend of hers. So now I've got no excuse. Prior to that, we'd recently done This is the Record of John at church and it has set me thinking about doing these verse anthems with voices singing the viol parts worldlessly - probably sacrilege I know, but I rather fancy having a go.

Then yesterday at church (St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church, Cadogan St. Chelsea), we sang Palestrina's Mass Aeterna Christi Munera, one of my favourites and I happened to read the editor's introduction in our vocal score. It talked about the possibility of transposing the work down and singing it with ATBaB, which chimes in with another idea I'd had. I've been rather taken with Andrew Carwood and the Cardinall's Musick's recording of the Byrd Masses with the 4-part mass transposed down. This had set me thinking about doing a concert with no sopranos, just alto, tenor, baritone and bass. Familiar music but heard in an unfamiliar way. Another staple at St. Mary's is Gascogne's lovely motet Caro Mea and this is another work which I think would take to downward transposition. Not sure if either of these concerts will come off, but at the moment its fun to plan.

Of course, I'd like to do Crossing again soon, having premiered it at the Chelsea Festival. That performance was rather limited by the logistics of performing with organ at St. Mary's Cadogan Street (the sight lines are less than ideal and the distance between console and conductor rather large). So it would be nice to do it again soon in a venue more conducive to performance with organ accompaniment. Then again, I'd like to revive my Requiem, this time performing it alternating movements with organ music by Messaien or Dupre. The list is endless.

I am also starting to assemble the libretto for a work based on Isaiah Chapter 6, mainly because I was rather taken with its language. I'm probably going to set the King James Version, but I need to read a couple of others first, just in case.

One final thing that's bubbling around is a work based on the idea of the resurrection. But I need to try and come up with an interesting selection of texts, so that might have to wait.

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