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2014 part one…

Okay, well, it seems as though I am not very good at updating this very often, so when I say “2014 part one” the suggestion that there may be a part two, or even three or four may turn out, in the end, to have been misleading!

However, the start to 2014 has been an exciting one, with the world premiere of The Pohutukawa Stands in its wind orchestra scoring by Memorial University of Newfoundland Wind Ensemble, conducted by Jason Caslor, as part of the Newfound Music Festival. Their performance, originally scheduled for the 29th January, was put back a couple of days due to the weather conditions, so was premiered on the 31st. Which is a nice segue in to…

this is my houseThe 31st January saw Aaron Tindall release his new CD “This is My House”. Aaron is a brilliant tubist, and a very good friend, so when he asked if I could re-work These Mist Covered Mountains for tuba and piano, I had no hesitation, and he has released it on his new album.

The University of Saskatchewan High School Select Band performed Apex last week, conducted by Darrin Oehlerking with U of S Professor of Trumpet, Dean Mcneill. Was great to see all the local high school kids come together for such a great weekend of music making – and Dean, Darrin and the band gave a great performance of Apex – many thanks guys!

Steve Mead commissioned Requiem Paraphrases nearly 10 years ago, so was delighted to hear that he had programmed it once more, this time in Russia with Brandt Brass in the city of Saratov.

This coming weekend (7-9 Feb) sees the first Origins Festival here in Saskatoon at the University of Saskatchewan. Featuring new music for wind orchestra, jazz orchestra and brass band, the weekend features guest soloists David Thornton and Jens Lindemann, alongside the weekend’s guest conductor, Gillian Mackey.

The UofS Wind Orchestra¬†are performing my concerto for euphonium, Origins, on Friday 7th, with Dave Thornton as guest soloist. Dave and I have known each other for 15 years and worked on more projects together than either of us are likely to be able to remember (!), so it is great that he has been able to head up to Canada and for the audiences here to hear such an amazing musician. And speaking of amazing musicians…

The festival will be joined by Jens Lindemann (who I am currently writing a new concerto for – to be premiered in April by Reed Thomas and the MTSU Wind Ensemble) on Sunday 9th who will, amongst masterclasses and other activities, be performing with the combined forces of Saskatoon’s two brass bands – Saskatoon Brass Band and Bridge City Brass Band. Conducted by Will Martin, the band will perform Epitaph (for Hillsborough) as well as a new version of Starlight, arranged for Dave and Jens.

And finally, to complete the set of performances in really cold, snowy, places, Tomra Brass Band, conducted by Nick Ost, will give the first Norwegian performance of The Legend of King Arthur this weekend and the NM contest. You can watch this live on the internet at 730am (GMT).

Okay, that’s enough from me for now….I do intend to write more on here, but experience tells me that I shouldn’t make a promise out of that!