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Fragile Oasis has been picked for the Senior Cup brass band competition, part of the Spring Festival held in at the Winter Gardens, Blackpool, England, on Saturday May 13.
Originally commissioned by the Leyland Band and Michael Bach (partly funded by The John Golland Trust), this is the first time it has been used as a set test piece having previously been used as an own choice selection in brass band contests on three different continents.
Further information can be found from the British Bandsman website.
A soundcloud clip of the premiere performance by Leyland Band and Michael Bach, at the European Brass Band Championships 2013, held in Oslo, can be heard below.
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Throughout the last academic year, the University of Saskatchewan Wind orchestra under the baton of Dr. Darrin Oehlerking, have recorded a CD of my music, which will be released this coming weekend (Sat 29 October 2016). They chose repertoire that had been commissioned and/or premiered by Saskatchewan bands (I.S.S. Flyover, Skyscapes, Zenith and Autumn Falling), alongside several other works between grade 2 – 4 levels.
The recording also features Professor Dean McNeill on trumpet (Apex), Dr. Garry Gable narrating Macbeth’s monologue as part of their recording of Lament (from Macbeth), and members of Ms. Colleen Dueck and her Grade 4 class at Lakeridge School in Saskatoon (Letters for Home).
I’d like to publically thank all involved in the project – all the members of the UofS Wind Orchestra, Darrin, Dean, Garry, Wayne Giesbrecht (who did an incredible job not just in recording the band, but in the editing during post-production).
For further details as to how to get a copy, contact Darrin Oehlerking – firstname.lastname@example.org
Full track listing:
Letters for Home
Lament (from Macbeth)
Song of Hope
Alexis Demailly (Principal Cornet of the National Opera Orchestra of Paris) commissioned a new work for cornet/trumpet and string quartet (titled “Meditation”) from me last year, and has recently recorded it ready for his new CD release “Fantasque” – where Alexis is accompanied by the Urban String Quartet.
Ahead of the release, he has given a very interesting interview on 4barsrest.com, where he talks about the project as a whole, the composers involved and why he commissioned them. As a composer, it’s always nice to read/hear such kind words about your music, especially when it’s from a musician such as Alexis (I’m also described as “young” by the interviewer, so of course it is a good interview….).
I’ve heard the final edit of Meditation, and the playing and musicianship are absolutely stunning – can’t wait to hear the whole CD!
“Peter’s music is refined, with beautiful strands of melodies and sublime underlying harmonies that are enough to stand on their own.” – Alexis Demailly
Various bits of news are now up on the site including:
The Legend of King Arthur has been selected for the Championship Section of the National Brass Band Championships, held in the Royal Albert Hall, on October 11 2014.
More info can be found on the piece here – including how to buy sets of music and extra scores, and study scores will be available on the day at the RAH.
A consortium of wind bands came together to commission the wind orchestra scoring of my work for brass band, Fragile Oasis. It was completed in 2014 and was commissioned by a consortium of the following bands:
Agrupación Músico-Cultural “Las Musas” de Guadalupe (Murcia) – Dr. José Ibáñez Barrachina – Spain
Band of the Coldstream Guards – Major Darren Wolfendale – UK
Borge Musikkorps – Sverre Stakston Olsrud – Norway
The Brooklyn Wind Symphony – Jeff W. Ball, Artistic Director – USA
Dunshan Symphonic Wind Orchestra – Adrian Schneider – China
Koninklijke harmonie Ste. Cecilia Zele – Bart Picqueur – Belgium
Musikgesellschaft Emmen – Manuel Imhof – Switzerland
University of Saskatchewan Wind Orchestra – Dr. Darrin Oehlerking – Canada
The work will be available to all non-consortium bands from April 2014. Details of the various premieres of the consortium bands will be found on this site (Borge Musikkorps – 19 Oct, Las Musas – 9 Nov, BWS – 21 March 2015)
You can hear the recording made by Dunshan Symphonic Wind Orchestra below
There are several premieres coming in the next few months…
Commissioned by Jacques Mauger, with funds provided by the Buffet Group, Journey is a 20 minute concerto for trombone and wind orchestra. It will receive it’s world premiere at the World Band Festival, held in Lucerne, Switzerland on Sunday 21 September.
Jacques will be accompanied by L’orchester d’harmonie de la Republican Guard (Paris), who will be directed by their Principle Conductor, François Boulanger.
The first movement is an up-tempo tour de force for the soloist; jazz and funk influences keeping it rhythmically intense and full of momentum. The second movement is a slow, lyrical movement – gradually evolving from the opening phrases. The final movement again finds more influences from jazz and funk, alongside rock music. Again testing the soloist to their extremes, the final movement ends with a rousing climax.
I had previously worked with Jacques on a commission 10 years ago – Elegie, for trombone and brass quintet. Am very much looking forward to hearing the new work!
More details about the concert here
Letters for Home
Letters for Home is a three movement work, commissioned by East Lancashire Concert Band with support from Arts Council England, to commemorate the start of the First World War, and the role played in the war by the ‘Accrington Pals’. Before each movement a reading should be made – these may be a letter sent from The Front, WW1 poetry, thoughts and reflections recorded elsewhere, or new words, written by local poets, school children or others.
Whilst specifically concerned with the First World War, each of the work’s movements broadly outlines emotions that would form part of any soldiers lives during any war – and as such, performances of this work can easily be adapted to reflect other wars both modern and historical, and locally sourced words for the readings is highly encouraged.
The first movement, “The Bittersweet Love Song” is the story of a soldier saying goodbye to his loved one before leaving for war. The opening passages are of the soldier, perhaps putting to the back of his mind the danger he is facing, singing a love song to his wife or girlfriend. In the following passages we hear his loved one singing “I love you”, played by the flute section.
We again hear the soldier singing – this time with more of a sense of what lies ahead for him, but now the response is further away as they gradually move more distant from each other. The movement ends without conclusion, but with chords for the soldier’s song played hauntingly over the percussion.
The second movement, “The Trench”, is more self-explanatory. It combines bravado in the percussion opening with the whole band coming together as one – as a unit, before again we hear fear and trepidation in the brass, once more failing to reach a resolution. Perhaps the thoughts of the soldier are interrupted as the percussion once more calls the men to arms. The movement ends with gun shots in the percussion.
The final movement, “In Memory”, opens with a repetition of the love song from the opening movement, before a slow lament, again never resolving, is heard. It keeps finding a new key, a new place, intending to represent the cyclical nature of war, and again without resolution, suggesting that war is also often that way.
Letters for Home is dedicated to Ian McGuinness, who’s support, enthusiasm, and shear hard work led to this work being commissioned and performed, and to the East Lancashire Concert Band, who will give the premiere on 27 September 2014, at the Town Hall, Accrington, home of the Accrington Pals.
Music for an Occasion
Broadly in three a joining movements, Music for an Occasion has been written to celebrate the opening of the new building at Arch Bishop Beck School, Liverpool. The first and last are the same musical material – it opens with workman sounds (metallic percussion), representing building, but leaves is left suspended harmonically at the end of the movement.
The middle movement is a hymn (with optional singing part), and is followed by a return to the “building” sounds, this time resolving with everyone playing together in unison.
Music for an Occasion was commissioned by Bruce Hicks and Arch Bishop Beck School, Liverpool and will receive its premiere on 3 October 2014.
Images of Tewkesbury
Images of Tewkesbury is an 8 movement work for brass band, junior brass band, children’s choir and adult choir, all centred around the British town of Tewkesbury. With words by Brenda Read-Brown (specifically commissioned for this work), the 8 movements chronicle important historical moments in the town, the floods that affect the area still today, the Abbey, the old industries and the celebration, in memoriam, of one of Tewkesbury’s most significant musical figures, Miles Amherst.
The première of Images of Tewkesbury will take place at Tewkesbury Abbey, 25 October 2014
2014 has seen several world premiere’s so far…
Orpheus, a new concerto for trumpet, was given its premiere by Jens Lindemann, who commissioned the work, accompanied by the brilliant Middle Tennessee State University Wind Ensemble conducted by their director, Reed Thomas in April of this year, before Jens went on to give the premiere performance, in Mexico, of a revised version of the concerto with symphony orchestra, accompanied by Orquesta Sinfónica de la Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León [OSUANL], conducted by their Artistic Director, Jesus Medina.
Recent performances have included the premiere with brass band accompaniment, given by Jens and the River City Brass Band, conducted by James Gourlay – who was the first person to ever commission me to write for brass band when at the RNCM! A review of the first of the six concerts can be found here.
The UK premiere will be in November where Jens will be accompanied by the Fodens Brass Band.
The Pohutukawa Stands
Originally written for brass band, The Pohutukawa Stands has been orchestrated for wind band, and was given it’s world premiere by Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) Wind Ensemble, conducted by Jason Caslor, in February this year. More information about the piece is available here and a youtube video of the premiere can be viewed using the link below.
Again originally a brass band piece, I had a lot of fun re-scoring this short march for wind band, to be given its first performance by Roy Anthony (director) and the San Diego Concert Band
You can hear the performance here:
Zenith is a short (around 3.5 minutes in length) work for school band – around the grade 2 standard. It was commissioned by Will Martin, Marcy Racicot and the Prairie Spirit West Senior Band, SK, Canada, who gave the premiere in May 2014. A recording of the work can be heard below: