I am pleased to say that SEXTET (“Lump of Love”) will be receiving its London premiere at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama on Wednesday 11th July. I will conduct players from the School as part of the summer New Music Society concert, starting at 8pm in the Silk Street Music Hall. The piece was commissioned by Patrick Bailey and Kevos, and premiered by them in Cornwall earlier this year. The programme note is as follows:
SEXTET lasts about 20 minutes. The piece is a combination of short or extremely short fragments with more continuous, forward-driven passages, all using the same musical material. In this sense we hear the material “said” in many different ways and on many different timescales. The main musical motto of the piece, which the clarinet plays at the start, is based on a phrase from the Joni Mitchell song “Both Sides, Now”, and the rest of the piece lets an array of different musical styles and allusions into its DNA, from Mahler to Meat Loaf. I found the subtitle, “Lump of Love”, in Joyce’s Ulysses, where its meaning is, unsurprisingly, somewhat layered. I’ve used it for its sonorous quality and its evocative ambiguity. Make of it what you will.