The Persistent Reality of Illusion

A trilogy upon the life and work of poet John Clare. Part of the John Clare series.

Original written in 2005; Revised version 2021. It is based upon Clare’s prose work ‘Journey Out of Essex’ describing his escape from the asylum in Epping Forest, and his long walk home to Northamptonshire.

Clare’s prose text ‘Journey Out of Essex’ describes his gradual deterioration, physically and mentally, during the days that he walked home, and the piece mirrors the slowing, exhausting journey whilst continuing to maintain the dramatic anticipation of arrival.

This is a shortened version of ‘Movement through Paradox’, but keeps the dramatic structure of the music..

The final work of the orchestral trilogy summarises the poet’s life, and particularly the rejections that he suffered from the literary public, and his incarceration in the Northampton asylum, where he died.

Welsh Series

These pieces form part of an on-going preoccupation with Welsh culture.

This is a musical interpretation of one of Waldo Williams’ poems that describes the vision of society that he saw in his Pembrokeshire homeland.

The last Welsh princess was imprisoned in a nunnery at Sempringham after the defeat and death of her father by the forces of Edward I. It explores the possible emotional states that the child and adult might have experienced in her captivity.

The title relates to Waldo Williams’ volume of poetry ‘Dail Pren’ (Leaves of a Tree).

These are musical sketches relating to paintings that I have in my home.

What is a 21st century answer to the mass of religious concert music that has been written in previous times? Such a query is behind the exploration of human spirituality that occurs in this symphony, and provoked some of the challenges I have explored.

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