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In July 1990 I was staying at the conductor Norman Del Mar's house in Millook on the north coast of Cornwall, finishing my large orchestral piece The Music of Dawn. Each evening there were spectacular sunsets, and I used to go up on the cliff to paint them in watercolours.

The Music of Dawn is concerned with the sun in all its aspects, and I am sure that these paintings assisted the compositional process: the one above was painted on 15th July, and next morning I wrote the music you can see and hear, in its final orchestral form, on the website introduction page.

 
 

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Recent and Forthcoming Performances

03 - 06/10/2018  --  At the William Alwyn Festival 2018

The following performances will take place at Holy Trinity Church, Church Lane, Blythburgh, Halesworth, IP19 9LP.

04 October 2018, 10.30am
Lullaby (world premiere) -- Lesley-Jane Rogers, soprano / John Turner, recorder / Richard Simpson, oboe / mixed chamber ensemble

05 October 2018, 11.00am
Darkness Draws In -- Sarah-Jane Bradley, viola

05 October 2018, 7.30pm
Sonatina for Viola and Piano (world Premiere) -- Sarah-Jane Bradley, viola / Nathan Williamson, piano

See the festival website for more details and booking (should be updated soon).

08/10/2018, 8pm  --  Sonatina for viola and piano

Part of the Little Missenden Festival.

Sarah Jane Bradley, viola | John Lenehan, piano | St John the Baptist Church, Little Missenden, Amersham, HP7 0RA

Work details: Sonatina for Viola and Piano, Op.141

09/10/2018, 1pm  --  Variations for Piano

Dominic Degavino, piano | St George the Martyr, Borough High Street, London, SE1 1JA

Work details: Variations for Piano, Op.72

13/10/2018, 7.30pm  --  Adagio for Strings

Farnham Sinfonia | Conducted by Matthew Taylor | St Andrew’s Church, Upper Church Lane, Farnham, GU9 7PW

Work details: Adagio (string orchestra), Op.56b

13/10/2018, 7.45pm  --  World premiere: White Flame

Sarah Connolly, soprano | The Nash Ensemble | Purcell Room, Southbank Centre, London

Work details: White Flame, Op.149

17/10/2018, 7.30pm  --  Double Concerto, Variations for Strings

Sara Trickey, violin | Sarah Jane Bradley, viola | English Symphony Orchestra | Conducted by Kenneth Woods | Great Malvern Priory, Church Street, Malvern, WR14 2AY

Work details: Double Concerto, Op.122 | Variations on Bach's Chorale Die Nacht ist Kommen, Op.40

26/10 - 03/11/2018  --  Ein Celloleben

Performed by Joanna Gutowska on cello as part of the Presteigne Festival Autumn Tour.

26 October, 1.10pm -- Barber Institute of Fine Arts, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, B15 2TS

3 November, 7.30pm -- Holywell Music Room, Holywell Street, Oxford, OX1 3SD

Work details: Ein Celloleben, Op.129

08/11/2018, 1pm  --  Variations on a Theme of Haydn

Joseph Tong, piano | Waka Hasegawa, piano | St George’s, Great George Street, Bristol, BS1 5RR

Work details: Variations on a theme of Haydn, Op.144

13/11/2018, 7.30pm  --  The Art of Love

John Tomlinson, bass-baritone/speaker | Rozanna Madylus, mezzo-soprano | Counterpoise | Hampstead Arts Festival | St John’s Downshire Hill, Hampstead, London, NW3 1NU

Work details: The Art of Love

17/11/2018, 7.30pm  --  Variations for Strings

English Symphony Orchestra | Conducted by Kenneth Woods | Shire Hall, St Peter's Square, Hereford, HR1 2HX

Work details: Variations on Bach's Chorale Die Nacht ist Kommen, Op.40

08/12/2018, 7.30pm  --  Six Brahms Songs (Brahms arr. Matthews)

Roderick Williams, baritone | Nash Ensemble | Conducted by Martyn Brabbins | Wigmore Hall, 36 Wigmore Street, Marylebone, London, W1U 2BP

Work details: Six Songs (Brahms arr. Matthews)

02 - 03/04/2019  --  Winter Remembered

2 April 2019
Civic Hall, 13 Rother Street, Stratford-Upon-Avon, Warwickshire, CV37 6LU

3 April 2019
Birmingham Conservatoire, 200 Jennens Road, Birmingham, B4 7XR

Maxin Rysanov, viola | Orchestra of the Swan | Conducted by Kenneth Woods

Work details: Winter Remembered, Op.86

25/05/2019  --  World Premiere: Concerto for Orchestra

Chipping Campden Festival Academy Orchestra | Conducted by Thomas Hull | Chipping Campden Festival, Gloucestershire

Work details: Concerto for Orchestra, Op.151

28/05/2019  --  World premiere: Le Lac (dates expected to move to 2019)

Orchestra of the Swan | Conducted by Kenneth Woods | Civic Hall, 13 Rother Street, Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, CV37 6LU

Work details: Le Lac, Op.146

Other news

17/06/2018  --  Reaction to the premiere of David’s Ninth Symphony

The premiere of David's Ninth Symphony took place in Bristol during early May. As Richard Bratby of The Spectator describes, 'The audience at St George's Bristol - where Kenneth Woods conducted the world premiere with the English Symphony Orchestra - actually cheered, and Matthews's habit of writing recognisable melodies might have helped there. One tune (and that really is the word) in the fourth movement was so unabashedly cheerful that I found myself thinking: he'll never get away with this.'

17/06/2018  --  Elgar Festival 2018

David was involved in three events at the recent Elgar Festival in Worcester, which saw the performance of two arrangements - String Quartet in E Minor (Elgar arr. Matthews) and Sospiri (Elgar arr. Matthews) - as well as David’s String Quartet No.6.

See the photograph in the gallery of David alongside Elgar’s bust and Kenneth Woods, the artistic director of the festival.

18/06/2018  --  CD out now: Sixteen Contemporary Love Songs for Piano

Features David's work A Love Song.

See full recording details and listen to a sample.

30/09/2018  --  News from the mixing desk (updated September 2018)

David's Symphony No.9 was recently recorded for a Nimbus CD. Due to appear on the same disk are two pieces for strings,Double Concerto and Variations for Strings, set for recording on 16 October 2018 (prior to a concert performance of the same works). This extends David’s association with the English Symphony Orchestra as their John McCabe Fellow.

On 24 July the Ukrainian Festival Orchestra under Paul Mann recorded David's A June Song.

Recessional and David's new arrangement of the National Anthem were recorded for CD in July at Ely Cathedral. The National Anthem was recorded live at the concert, 'An English Coronation' on 23 July, by 70 players from the Gabrieli Players, 14 extra brass players from Chetham's School, over 50 singers from the Festival Consort and 250 young singers from the choral training programme Gabrieli Roar. The audience joined in the second verse of the Anthem so at that point there were over 1,000 performers.

The CD set, which will include all the music from the last four coronations, is due to be released early next year.

 
 
 

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