Specially-commissioned carol to be sung this Saturday

Richard Causton

A new carol by King's Music Fellow Richard Causton will be sung at Evensong this Saturday, 19 January. The carol is called Out of Your Sleep, and was specially-commissioned for the College Advent Service last year.

The carol rounded off a successful year for the composer. His orchestral piece Twenty Seven Heavens was one of 20 new works commissioned for the Cultural Olympiad as part of the New Music 20x12 programme. The piece was lauded in the Daily Telegraph's roundup of the year's classical highlights (A Year in the Arts, Saturday 15 December 2012).

Critic Ivan Hewett described it as the best of the New Music 20x12 pieces and "a brilliant translation into sound of William Blake's vision of the mythical Albion's struggles to awaken from spiritual death." It was premiered by the European Union Youth Orchestra at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw and then performed at the Edinburgh Festival and in Germany.

Causton was also a featured composer at the Park Lane Group Purcell Room Series this month. In addition to performances of his violin pieces Seven States of Rain and Fantasia and Air, a new piece for accordion was premiered, called Ricercare.

The Financial Times' Andrew Clarke wrote, "'Devised by Richard Causton, the concert juxtaposed duo percussion with solo accordion, and proved a much more successful – and compact – package than the PLG's opening salvo on Monday...Lindberg and Luciano Berio were represented by works that did not live up to their reputations, but Causton’s Ricercare, a premiere, burnished his. It’s an atmospheric memory piece, relying on the soloist’s subtlety and power of suggestion rather than overt virtuosity. It proved surprisingly effective – an antidote to the usual portrayal of the accordion as a wheeze-bag".

Causton's Chamber Symphony will be played by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra at the CBSO Centre, Birmingham, on 15 February.

Twenty Seven Heavens and Seven States of Rain are both available on the NMC label.

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17 January 2013