MB_191116-1796.jpg

MARTIN BUSSEY

composer

 

SHROPSHIRE LASS

New work premiered AUTUMN 2022: poetry of Mary Webb

set for soprano and guitar (click on links to performances, Mary Webb & the performers)

Shropshire Lass was completed in 2021, written for the duo of Holly Teague and Michael Matthews.

Lasting around 35 minutes the work tells a story of love, loss and memory, with the Shropshire countryside a significant element as the singer traces her past love, and his loss in the 1914-18 war.


This semi-staged piece receives its first complete performances as part of the Marches Songbook project in Autumn 2022 - dates and venues below.

If you are interested in hosting a performance of Shropshire Lass click here

The next panel details Holly and Michael's performance of the first five songs in March 2022.

image00003_edited_edited_edited.png
 

SHROPSHIRE LASS LAUNCHED

Holly Teague and Michael Matthews performed the first five songs in the Whitchurch Caldecott Festival

(click on links in the panel above to explore Mary Webb & the performers)

March 19 2022 saw the first, very successful performance by Holly and Michael of the first five songs of Shropshire Lass. Martin Bussey introduced the performance, stressing the important focus on Nature in Mary Webb's poems and also her frank allusions to sexual love. The enthusiastic applause from an appreciative audience showed the high standard of the performance and bodes well for reception of the work in its full version as part of the Marches Songbook project. 

Below: Holly and Michael in the Masonic Hall, Whitchurch.

SL Whitchurch.JPG
 

IN DAYS LIKE THESE WIGMORE HALL

OCTOBER 22 2022

Delighted that In days like these receives its next performance at London's Wigmore Hall as part of Ludlow English Song Day on October 22. It will be performed by James Atkinson, baritone and Iain Burnside, piano.

This short work sets Gerald Finzi's letter to Herbert Howells documenting the first performance of his Dies Natalis. This took place at Wigmore Hall itself. Though Finzi states that 'it wants the Cathedral, not Wigmore Hall'!

Full details of the concert here.

Score available from Composers Edition here.

wigmore_edited.jpg
 
Dickens mural_edited_edited_edited.jpg

WHAT THE DICKENS!

New work for two actors, choir, soprano, tenor and bass solos with oboe and piano 

July 20 2022 saw the very successful premiere of this new work commissioned by the St Marylebone Festival


The work features six characters from the novels written by Dickens when he lived round the corner from St Marylebone Church, in Devonshire Terrace in the 1840s. These have been commemorated in the mural which now stands on the site of Dickens' house, including the unforgettable Scrooge, the drunken Mrs Gamp, the perpetually optimistic Wilkins Micawber, Little Nell and many others.

The work includes original settings of three poems by Christina Rossetti: Up-Hill; Cobwebs; and A Life's Parallels. 

Scores of these are available from Composers Edition.

There are also settings of W.B.Yeats, Dickens' words, and re-imaginings of music by S.S.Wesley and drinking and temperance songs of Dickens' time.


The cast included actors Ros Shelley and Alex Knox alongside the choir of St Marylebone Parish Church, Gavin Roberts, piano and Clare Hoskins, oboe.

Rehearsal photos in the next panel!

 

WHAT THE DICKENS!

Below, actors Alex Knox and Ros Shelley channel their inner Micawbers (left)

Ros Shelley as Mrs Gamp celebrates the joys of drink with the choir of St Marylebone and Musical Director Gavin Roberts (right)

As a taster, listen to Martin Bussey playing Mr Dombey Seated here

The score is available from Composers Edition currently under £4!


 
 
LDSM_edited_edited_edited.png

THE WINDHOVER

Martin Bussey's setting of Gerard Manley Hopkins' THE WINDHOVER had a very warm reception from a large audience at Ambleside Parish Church as parted of the 2022 Lake District Summer Music Festival. Acclaimed tenor ROBERT MURRAY gave an intensely committed and compelling performance with ROSA HARTLEY, Violin.

SCORE available from Composers Edition here

Photos in the panel below of Martin with the performers; and giving a pre-concert talk with fellow composer, Cecilia McDowall and Festival Director Steven Threlfall before the performance.

 
 

A BROTHER ABROAD

Explore the vivid spiritual and political lives of 14th-century Bishop Peter of Corbavia!

The first performance  of A Brother Abroad at Pinner Music Festival was deemed a resounding success by the festival organisers and an appreciative audience on June 12 2021.

The commission celebrated 700 years since the dedication of St John's, Pinner by Bishop Peter of Corbavia.

The Festival's Director says:

'The performance was a triumph, with the superb and finely crafted score being widely appreciated for the way it brought the person of Peter, his faith and his time to life.'


A Brother Abroad sets a vibrant and spiritually charged text by Anthony Pinching.

Click here to hear Martin and Anthony discuss the work.

The next performance at Ludlow English Song Weekend on April 9 2022 (photo below) was equally well received in the magnificent surroundings of Ludlow Parish Church.

The score is available now from Composers Edition

Read more about the dynamic performers at the premiere by clicking on their names:

Marcus Farnsworth, baritone

Emma Halnan, flute

George Strivens french horn

Chris Brannick, percussion 

Click here to hear George Strivens play The Rites observed a metamorphosis of themes from the work for solo horn composed by Martin Bussey for him. The score can be previewed here.

image00014.jpeg
 

WELCOME 2022!

Martin Bussey previews exciting performances and recording in prospect for 2022

Click here for a round-up of some future events, including the premiere of Shropshire Lass

1f6ceae7-ecc2-4541-b936-839813927c6e.JPG
 
MB Cambridge_edited.jpg

CAMBRIDGE WEEKEND 2021

MATTHEW SCHELLHORN 

FLOREAT COLL REG

Over the weekend of November 19/20 2021 pianist Matthew Schellhorn continued his performances of Martin's Floreat Coll Reg.


Matthew commissioned this work and premiered it at the 2021 Three Choirs Festival.

In these two short pieces, Radliffe's Repose and Ledger's Coranto Martin pays tribute to two important influences from undergraduate days at Cambridge, Philip Radcliffe and Philip Ledger.

The work was played at St Catharine's College on Friday evening then Corpus Christi College on Saturday alongside piano music by Herbert Howells

Go to Composers Edition to view Martin's music for piano and organ including ​Floreat Coll Reg & links to other works.


Follow this link to access the St Catharine's performance (Floreat  begins around 37 minutes in)

 
2_large-1038x576.jpg

THREE CHOIRS FESTIVAL PREMIERE! 

PIANO MUSIC

July 30 2021 saw the premiere  of Floreat Coll. Reg. commissioned and performed by Matthew Schellhorn at Worcester Three Choirs Festival

Read what Matthew and Martin have to say about this new commission here 

Go to Composers Edition to view Martin's music for piano and organ including ​Floreat Coll Reg & links to other works.

Listen to Martin playing his piano music, including Shocklach Sketches here

 
timelessfigure_photoby_claireshovelton_5

TIMELESS FIGURE

The new 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

 

Upcoming Events

  • Shropshire Lass
    Sat, 15 Oct
    Maidment Auditorium, Shrewsbury School
    15 Oct, 19:30 – 16 Oct, 19:30
    Maidment Auditorium, Shrewsbury School, Ashton Rd, Shrewsbury SY3 7BA, UK
    Life, Love and Memory - settings of poetry by Mary Webb
    Share
  • Shropshire Lass
    Sat, 22 Oct
    St Oswald's Church, Malpas
    22 Oct, 19:00
    St Oswald's Church, Malpas, 14 Church St, Malpas SY14 8NU, UK
    Love, Loss and Memory: settings of Mary Webb
    Share