Premières 

Neil has conducted a number of World Premières during his conducting career, details and recordings of some of these pieces are below.

Towcester 917 - Jonathan Bates (2017)

Towcester 917 was commissioned by Towcester Studio Band as part of the 1100th anniversary celebrations of the town. The piece depicts the battle and siege between the Saxons and the Danes at the beginnings of the town.

Khvarenah: The City of Light - Alga Mau (2016)

Khvarenah: The City of Light was the winning composition in Abingdon Concert Band's inaugral composition competition. The piece tries to capture the spirit of ‘Khvarenah’, an Avestan word for the Zoroastrian concept of ‘royal glory’ and ‘splendour’. It opens with a quiet, steady layering of woodwind and brass, depicting an ancient desert city in the vast lands as the sun emerges from the horizon. We are then taken through the bazaars of the city as the markets are filled with joyful shouting and music and dance before entering the central courtyards, the royal army saluting their newly crowned king, heralding in a new era of glory.

Remembering Childhood - Alexander Webb (2016)

Remembering Childhood was the 2nd placed piece in Abingdon Concert Band's composition competition. The composer writes about the piece:

Remembering Childhood is a four movement suite that captures small memories I have of growing up in Wiltshire. Each movement, dreamlike and sometimes sporadic, describes various locations as well as the family member it is dedicated to.

I - Barbury Castle. An ancient Celtic hill fort, on the edge of the village where I grew up. My grandparents frequently took me there to fly kites and I used to imagine what it might have been like when it was first built, when pagan rituals and battling clans were the norm. This movement ends quietly with the theme somewhat understated. The audience must wait until the fourth movement for the resolution.

 

II - Press Start to Play. This movement is dedicated to my sister. It remembers when we grew up together; she studied dance and the music (in 3/4) attempts to reflect this.

 

III - Cows! This is something of a scherzo movement and tells the story of my cousin and I walking on Roundway Hill, getting chased quite literally by cows.

 

IV - The Turnip Hoer. The Turnip Hoer is a Wiltshire folk song: a fitting end to this suite. I have alluded to (sometimes gently, sometimes less so) composers that my parents introduced me to and who have remained some of my favourites since.

Unsung Heroes - Tom Davoren (2015)

Unsung Heroes was commissioned by Abingdon Concert Band using a legacy left to the band by founding member Bob Eccles. The piece was premièred on Armed Forces Day in 2015 at the Cornerstone Arts Centre in Didcot.

© 2020 by Neil Brownless

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