Best new pieces in 2016-17

I seem to have turned a corner compositionally in 2016/17 – suddenly things I write sound almost *exactly* the way I want them to once I’ve finished them, instead of mostly or kind of the way I want them to. Here’s a selection of pieces written in the last year or so – I hope you’ll agree.

My #choirsagainstracism project has been essential to this – having something that I’m passionately angry about has been a massive creative force – and all the pieces written through that are free, so why not try them with your choir?

Hear “My Father” in a beautiful new recording by KC VITAs chamber choir, Kansas:

Voces Inauditae in Edinburgh will also be singing it (SSAATTBB version) in September.

“In Springtime” has just been recorded by the Reid Consort in Edinburgh, and will be released on CD soon. Hear it below:

“The Beach”, the final piece from the same set, will be workshopped by the BBC Singers in October – recording coming soon hopefully… would your choir like to premiere it? Available for SSSSAAAA or SSAATTBB – get the score at #choirsagainstracism.

Also unpremiered so far: Brian Bilston, the unofficial poet laureate of Twitter, has very kindly allowed me to set his poem “The Kindness of Strangers” to music. It’s written in memory of the bombings in London and Manchester (and set to music also with the tragedy at Grenfell in mind). It’s about 3 minutes long, for SATB (maximum divisi to SSAATBB, ideal if you’re a bit short on tenors), easy to medium difficulty.
Download a sample score
Download a sample score with piano reduction
Hear an audio demo

Adeste Fideles has been accepted for Project: Encore (it was originally written for Neil Ferris and Wimbledon Choral Society), which aims to get second (and further) performances for new choral works. Hear it below:

New! A New Year Carol – SATB with a few bars of soprano divisi. Would make a good closer or encore for a concert near Christmas, or (ideally!) for a concert around the start of the year. Download the score and hear an audio demo. £20 for a PDF to print unlimited copies, or £1 per printed copy (plus postage if outside the UK).

I’m also rather pleased with how “Incitement to Sailing”, the first part of “The Birlinn” to be completed, has come out – it’s available for SATB and piano or for TBarB and piano. Premiere of SATB version coming November 2017.

Janya – rescored for full orchestra – needs a fairly big orchestra (3-3-3-2 winds, 4-3-3-1 brass, perc, timp, strings).

“No Man Is An Island” is also rather good: hear the version for men’s voices below:

Versions for SABar and SSA are also available at #choirsagainstracism: ATB version on request.

“I Was Listening To A Pogrom” still needs a good recording – for singer(s), piano, and speaking voice(s), words by Michael Rosen (Children’s Poet Laureate). Again, score at #choirsagainstracism.

And finally, “Welcome Carol”, also part of #choirsagainstracism:

I hope some of these will suit your choir (there are pieces for all sorts of choirs here, from unison beginners to 8-part advanced) – please get in touch at if you’re interested in performing any of them, or commissioning a new work.