John Hawkins Music

‘Hawkins writes in a sound-language which can be enjoyable and even compelling, ensuring communication at a first hearing’


Strange Bridge

Edward Thomas’s poem ‘The Bridge’ begins ‘I have come a long way today: On a strange bridge alone …’. Some years ago I set three of his poems for voice with flute, viola and harp (‘The Unknown Bird’). I have now added a second cycle of three songs, this time with piano: ‘The Bridge’, ‘Will you Come?’ and ‘For These’.
‘For These’ was written in 1915 in the same month he enlisted. He was killed by a shell, aged 39, at Arras in 1917.

Looking Forward




On June 21st, the wonderful Siân Philipps played my ‘Nocturne’ and ‘Cortège?’ for violin and piano in Brighton. Both pieces are reflections on poems by García Lorca. She also played works by Vaughan Williams, Sally Beamish and Egon Wellesz. The concert was part of the Brighton Fringe. Both pieces will be played again in September (also in Brighton) by Ellie Blackshaw and Yoko Ono.

Marcel Morceaux

Happily, the concert including my three ‘Marcel Morceaux’ which pianist Karen Kingsley had to cancel in June has now been rescheduled to Saturday 2nd October.The event includes works by Benjamin Britten and pieces by several members of New Music Brighton. It will be at the Friends’ Meeting House in Brighton at 2.30 pm.

Period Pieces

Last year I wrote four pieces for keyboard in the form of a baroque suite (Allemande, Courante, Sarabande and Gigue).
I have now recomposed them for string trio. You can hear the Sarabande in Soundcloud.

Sleepless City

‘Nocturne’ is a short new piece for violin and piano, a partner for my ‘Cortège?’ – both prompted by poems by Lorca. In this case it is the bizarre, threatening  ‘Nocturne, Brooklyn Bridge’ written by Lorca in the 1920s when he briefly lived in New York (the title of the collection ‘Poet in New York’ was meant to sound paradoxical!)

“Out in the sky, no one sleeps. No one, no one.
No one sleeps.
Lunar creatures sniff and circle the dwellings.”

John Hawkins composer

John Hawkins studied composition with Malcolm Williamson and Elisabeth Lutyens. He has written a wide range of chamber, vocal, choral and orchestral pieces, which have been performed worldwide.