Not an offer of drink but a concert by COMA Sussex on 18th May including not only Dave Smith’s ‘Whiskies of Islay‘ pieces but my ‘Divisibility’ and others by Michael Nyman, Zoe Martlew, Sheena Phillips, Andrew Hadfield and Patrick Harrex. As always with COMA the pieces are for flexible ensembles – bizarre, radical and entertaining!
I’ve just rewritten three brief pieces ‘Trivia’ for two clarinets – Prelude, Tango and Ragtime – they date back to my youth but come up well I think in a slightly brittle way! Score available from me.
Great Sussex dialect words I’ve plundered for my new ‘Song of Three’ (I must be settling in):
Aggy dumbledore, beazled pug,
Plaguey shimeroys, slabby spud,
Tossicated lubbock, flittermouse farisees,
Chuckle-headed codger – Zackly.
[Aggy – peevish; Dumbledore – bumblebee; Beazled – weary; Plaguey – troublesome; Shimeroys – midges; Slabby – wet, slippery; Spud – for digging; Tossicated – drunk; Flittermouse – bat; Farisees – fairies; Chuckle-headed – daft; Codger – miser]
(… despite the date, this is not an April fool!)
The poet Edward Thomas was killed in action at Arras on 9 April 1917. He had lived in Steep near Petersfield so, on March 17th as part of the Petersfield Musical Festival, there was a centenary concert with readings and settings of his poems given by many distinguished performers. The concert included ‘Like the Touch of Rain’ – one of my cycle of Thomas settings, ’The Unknown Bird’, for baritone, flute, viola and harp.
Flautist Nancy Ruffer and pianist Dominic Saunders included the first performance of my ‘Sonata Serenata’ in their recital at St John’s Hampstead on Wednesday 1st March. The ‘Serenata’ of the title is slightly ironic as, although the second movement is a rather remote lover’s plea, the last is a jagged toccata – not for playing under windows! A wonderful recording by Aoife ni Raghaill, flute and David Jones, piano can found in Soundcloud.
John Hawkins studied composition with Malcolm Williamson and Elisabeth Lutyens. He has written many chamber, vocal and orchestral pieces, which have been performed worldwide, as well as successful music for children,