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  • £34.95

    Three Burns Portraits - Rodney Newton

    Robert Burns (1759-1796) was one of the most colourful literary figures of the 18th Century. The son of a tenant farmer, he was born in Ayrshire, Scotland, and earned a living variously as a farmer, flax dresser and exercise man, gradually establishing himself as a poet, lyricist and collector of folksongs. A charismatic character, by the time of his death he had become Scotland's best known and best-loved poet. This work depicts three characters from his personal life who also figure in his poetry. Although Burns intended much of his verse to be sung, and even wrote tunes himself for many of his lyrics, all the melodies in this work are original.I John AndersonJohn Anderson (1759-1832) was an Ayrshire carpenter and close friend to Robert Burns, who immortalised Anderson in his affectionate poem John Anderson Ma Jo, which imagines both men in old age (although Burns was only 37 when he died). Anderson is reputed to have made Robert Burns' coffin and survived the wrecking of the paddle steamer Cornet at Craignish Point near Oban during a storm in 1820, an event incorporated into this movement. This is a picture of a tough, resilient Scot who meets the storms of Life head-on.II Mary CampbellRobert Burns had numerous love affairs, sometimes with more than one woman at a time. Mary Campbell, a sailor's daughter from the highland district of Dunoon, had entered service with a family in Ayrshire when she met Burns. Although involved with another woman at the time, Burns was smitten with Campbell and there is evidence to suggest that he planned to emigrate to Jamaica with Mary. However, nothing came of this wild scheme and Mary, fearing disgrace and scandal left the area but not before Burns had enshrined her in at least two poems, Highland Mary and To Mary Campbell. Significantly, the first line of the latter runs, "Will ye go to the Indies, my Mary, and leave auld Scotia's Shore?" (His ardent pleading can be heard in the middle section of the movement). Mary's music paints a portrait of a graceful young lady who had the presence of mind not to be entirely won over by the charms of Robert Burns.III Douglas GrahamBurns was a heavy drinker, and this is most likely a contribution to his early death. He was matched in this capacity by his friend, Douglas ‘Tam' Graham, a farmer who sought solace in the bottle from an unhappy marriage. Burns used his drinking partner as a model for the comic poem, Tam O'Shanter, which tells of a drunken Ayrshire farmer who encounters a Witches' Sabbath and escapes with his life, but at the cost of his horse tail. The story was said to be made up by Graham himself to placate his fearsome, but very superstitious, wife after he arrived home one night, worse the wear for drink and with his old mare's tail cropped by some village prankster. This present piece depicts Tam enjoying a riotous night at a local hostilely in the company of his friends, John Anderson and ‘Rabbie' Burns.Rodney Newton - 2013

    Estimated delivery 3-5 days
  • £69.95

    Neverland

    "All children, except one, grow up" wrote J.M. Barrie about Peter Pan in 1911; the first line and an expression of beautiful melancholy and fantasy, coming to represent one of the best-loved children's stories of the twentieth century. 'Peter & Wendy', as the book was first released, has subsequently been transformed into adaptations for film and stage, with subsequent books based on this iconic tale. In writing this new work for brass band, the composer has taken three of the main themes from J. M. Barrie's book, and used these themes to create new musical material, forming a work in three contrasting sections.I. Journey to NeverlandThe opening of the work, mysterious in its style, reflects the opening chapters of the story - a leafy London street, still in the dead of night - with the music transforming quickly as it builds in texture and momentum - a Journey to Neverland through the night sky; Second Star to the Right and straight on 'til morning. "Then Peter knew that there was not a moment to lose. 'Come,' he cried imperiously, and soared out at once into the night, followed by John and Michael and Wendy. Mr & Mrs Darling and Nana rushed into the nursery too late. The birds were flown."II. The Windows that ClosedThe central section of the work takes its inspiration from the sense of longing throughout the book, mainly by Peter Pan, the Darling Children & The Lost Boys. Distant memories of life before Neverland, memories of the Lost Boys' mothers, and regret at what the children have missed. Peter says "Long ago, I thought like you that my mother would always keep the window open for me; so I stayed away for moons and moons and moons, and then flew back; but the window was barred, for mother had forgotten all about me, and there was another little boy sleeping in my bed."III. Aboard the Pirate ShipThe final section of the work takes its inspiration from the Pirate Ship, and Peter Pan's ultimate battle with its infamous Captain Hook. "In person, he was cadaverous and blackavized, and his hair was dressed in long curls, which at a distance looked like black candles, and gave a singularly threatening expression to his handsome countenance. His eyes were the blue of the forget-me-not, and of a profound melancholy, save when he was plunging his hook into you, at which time two red spots appeared in them and lit them up horribly."

    Estimated delivery 5-7 days