secular elegy

I discussed in my previous post march of the sceptics how – in-between more mainstream / genre-based compositions – I’ve been exploring the fusion of strands from jazz and blues with more traditional choral music and opera.

Part of the wonder of composing music is the freedom to erode silos and enable cross-fertilisation of ideas and styles. Not that there’s anything wrong with particular musical styles and idioms – they all provide much that I enjoy. But it’s also good to break the rules and challenge audience expectations across content, form and structure.

This piece, secular elegy for voices and strings, fuses choral, operatic and jazz elements around the Ukrainian dorian scale. It seemed an ideal partnership given the overlap between it and various jazz chords and scales.

As its name suggests, I wanted this to be an evocative, elegiacal piece – but for those of us who subscribe to no particular faith or creed. Regardless of religion, we all have our own ways of remembering, reflecting and commemorating. This is mine. I hope others may find something in it to appreciate too.

It’s best listened to with headphones at a quiet time of day to engage with it fully – and to appreciate its quieter passages.

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