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This work is designed to acknowledge the forthcoming centenary of the 1914-1918 Great War. It is scored, in full, for baritone soloist, SATB chorus and orchestra (2222:4221: timp : harp : strings). The file which is displayed here is for voices and piano accompaniment, the latter being for rehearsal purposes only as it is an approximate transcription of the full orchestral score. The MP3 sample is of the full orchestral score. The work is written with the voices at the forefront of the ensemble; the orchestra fulfils an accompanying role for the majority of the work. The poetry which forms the libretto of the work comes from Herman Hesse, Rupert Brooke, Alan Seeger, Wilfred Owen, Isaac Rosenberg and John McCrae.
The ‘thread’ or ‘story’ of this musical offering seeks to describe and reflect (a) the patriotism and the appetite for adventure at the beginning of the war, (b) the subsequent despair and disillusionment after experiencing the horror of the war, and moving finally and inevitably to (c) the reason why we should still remember those who lost their lives during that conflict and, by extension, in the wars that have followed. It is intentional that this work should have a resonance for those involved in current conflicts.
The fourth song in this work (The Soldier) was "highly praised" in the Bournemouth Symphony Chorus "Compose Yourself" competition, January 2012. A professional German singer, Gregory Wiest, gave the first performance of the fifth song (Rendezvous) in Munich on 9th June 2013. A male voice choir version of "In Flanders Fields" won the 1st prize in the Cornwall International Male Voice Chorus Festival composition competition in Sept. 2012.
If you would like to receive a free copy of the libretto and a more detailed explanation of the work, or a copy of the full score, please contact the composer by email.
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