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MARTIN BUSSEY

composer

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JUNE 2024

Several chances to hear Martin Bussey's  work in June 2024, including one premiere! Click on titles for link to scores

Saturday June 8, Chester Bach Singers performs Martin’s Roses in Wesley Centre, Chester at 15.00 hours. 

Roses is a short cycle for unaccompanied SATB choir, written for and premiered by CBS in 2009.

It sets three Renaissance poems linked to Roses:

‘Go, lovely rose’;

‘Lady, when I behold the roses sprouting’;

and ‘Roses, their sharp spines being gone’.

Concert details here

Friday June 14 sees the premiere of Martin Bussey’s work for solo French Horn, The Rites observed, at Pinner Music Festival. This will be given by its dedicatee, the highly talented young player George Strivens (photo below), in Pinner Parish Church at 19.30 hrs. The work is a metamorphosis of ideas from the longer work A Brother Abroad, commissioned by the festival in 2021. It focuses on some of the liveliest moments from the original piece and exploits George’s technical brilliance and power. He recently recorded it for release later this year by Resonus Classics.

Watch a preview here 

Wednesday June 26 at 19.30, part of the ‘Hidden Gems’ series at St Mary-le-Strand, London WC2R 1ES includes Martin Bussey’s In days like these. Part of a concert focused on Gerald Finzi and his circle, the song sets a letter from Finzi to Herbert Howells written in the early days of World War 2. The text reflects on composing during wartime. Martin’s setting has received much positive acclaim for its sensitivity. It was described by one listener as a moving musical presentation of Finzi’s personality. Performed on several occasions around the country already, here it will be sung by baritone Alex Zasiadko, a student at the Guildhall School of Music with Gavin Roberts, piano.

Tickets/details here


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A BROTHER ABROAD RECORDED

In February/March 2024 Resonus Classics recorded a new CD of Martin's music at Stoller Hall, Manchester. 

Over three days baritone Marcus Farnsworth recorded the very successful A Brother Abroad, commissioned in 2021 by Pinner Music Festival, together with several of the original players: Emma Halnan, Flute and George Strivens, French Horn reprised their original roles. They were joined by Stephen Burke, Percussion. The performance was directed by Martin Bussey with librettist Anthony Pinching in attendance (and taking many of the photos!). Emma recorded her linked solo piece La Rossa, and George his, The Rites Observed. Both pieces are metamorphoses of themes from the longer work. In later sessions, soprano Alison Rose and pianist Libby Burgess recorded Martin's song cycle A Chainless Soul, which sets poems of Emily Bronte. Marcus recorded Martin's Whitman cycle Children of Adam, again with Libby. All the performers can be seen in the photos in the panel below. The producer was Adam Binks.

Click on links for more details of artists. Scores at Composers Edition

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TIMELESS FIGURE

A collaboration with photographer Laurel Turton

'A 45-minute tour de force...imaginative writing for marimba, clarinet and viola...some striking textures...the vocal line being expressive and singer-friendly yet highly wrought.' - planethugill.com, 2020

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TIMELESS FIGURE REVIVED

November 2023 saw a highly successful revival of Timeless Figure at The Brownlow Centre, Whitchurch & International Anthony Burgess Centre, Manchester. 

Over the weekend more than 80 people, many new to contemporary music theatre, enjoyed watching baritone Peter Edge brilliantly reprise the role of clockmaker Joyce that he created at the 2020 Tete-a-Tete Festiva. He was expertly and idiomatically accompanied by Dan Mawson, clarinet, Ellie Waddington, viola and Sophie Smith, marimba. against a background of commissioned, synchronised images by Laurel Turton, projected by Stephen Hyde.

more details and score at Composers Edition

Photos below

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NEW PIANO PIECES!

More music from Shocklach, Martin's home for the past 8 years on the borders of Cheshire & Wales. Or rather, music inspired by trips and visits.

Three new piano pieces are available from September 1 from Composers Edition.

Click on the titles to see sample scores and product notes.

Then click in the panels below and head to see Martin introduce and play the works on YouTube.

Christopher and Mary Dove

Cottage at East Bergholt

Stirling Statues

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MARTIN TALKS!

Yes - he does!

Martin Bussey frequently gives talks about a wide range of musical genres, composers and individual works. He presents lively, engaging and expertly informed presentations. These build on 25 years teaching at Chetham's School of Music and his long-standing connection with amateur musicians. He regularly talks about his own music, most recently to the Friends of Southwell Cathedral, presenting the musical journey behind his CD In no strange land

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MARTIN TALKS FREQUENTLY AT SOUTHWELL MUSIC FESTIVAL

2022: MARTIN TALKS ABOUT HIS OWN MUSIC AT LAKE DISTRICT SUMMER MUSIC FESTIVAL ALONG WITH CECILIA MCDOWALL

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MARTIN HAS RECORDED A NUMBER OF TALKS ABOUT THE MUSIC OF GERALD FINZI AVAILABLE ON HIS YOUTUBE CHANNEL HERE

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ASHES UNDER URICON

In January 2023 Martin visited the site of the Roman city of Uricon, near Wroxeter in Shropshire. The substantial remains above ground are dominated by 'The Old Work' a substantial piece of Roman wall. Together with much evidence of Roman masonry incorporated into the local buildings, the site has inspired a sequence of songs for voice and piano, currently being written. Texts include Dickens' account of the 1859 excavations, complete with concern from the local farmer for the impact on his turnips, and passages from Wilfred Owen's poem inspired by the site. More photos below: