At the beginning of the month (2 September), the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet was ‘soloist’ in a new concerto by French composer and conductor Fabrice Bollon, Aux trois coins de la terre; the work comprises a meditation on the courage of three women – from Guatemala, Iran and Kenya – who are represented by the world’s ‘three corners’ referred to by the title. A few days later (6 September), Sebastian Fagerlund’sViolin Concerto ‘Darkness in Light’ – written for Pekka Kuusisto, and commissioned by the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra – was given its premiere in Finland.
James Dillon’sNew York Triptych, meanwhile, was heard at the Bohemian National Hall, New York; this followed on from the World Premiere of the work at Darmstadt, back in July.
Among performances taking place during Judith Bingham’s 60th Birthday Year, no fewer than six works appeared on the programme of the 4-day Music @ Malling Festival (Chopin, My Father’s Arms, Shelley Dreams, The Waning Moon (World Premiere of the version for baritone and strings), The Cathedral of Trees and The Hythe). Jonathan Dove’sThe Middleham Jewel, a work that incorporates period instruments the harpsichord and theorbo among its line-up, was given a performance in Salzburg (20 September) by the Mozarteumorchester Salzburg; the historical jewel of the title is a lozenge-shaped pendant with a depiction of the Holy Trinity and a Latin inscription.
Performed earlier in the year, Stephen McNeff's'The Secret Garden' 'doesn't lack for graceful vocal lines' according to a review in September's issue of Opera, which goes on to hail the work as both 'gripping' and 'fast-paced'. Performances took place in July and August at Blackheath Halls, London and Banff Centre, Canada.
Works for Piano, Prepared Piano and Toy Piano
February Pieces for Piano and Octet '61 for Jasper Johns