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Orchestra premieres work by renowned composer for anniversary

Thu, 23 Jun 2022

The Isle of Man Wind Orchestra is to premiere a work by a world famous composer to mark its 25th anniversary.

Manx Dances by Martin Ellerby will be performed for the first time at St Ninian’s Church, Douglas, on Friday 1st July, 7.30pm, with the composer present in the audience.

Martin Ellerby is one of the world’s best known composers of music for brass bands and wind and concert orchestras.

In composing the music, Martin Ellerby has renewed a friendship with the orchestra that began when he composed Five Manx Romances for its 20th anniversary and visited the Island to research the pieces.

‘That work concerned itself with historic locations and events on the Island which resonated with me and all of which I had visited,’ he said.

‘I was delighted to be asked to write for the orchestra again, this time for its 25th anniversary.

‘Manx Dances features four movements: Castletown, Ramsey, Point of Ayre and Peel.The new work celebrates diverse coastal places so as to include the whole Island – the art of diplomacy.

‘The four movements are Castletown, a bright and lively opening with unexpected turns here and there; Ramsey, a gently lilting, yet passionate, movement that comes into focus only to slip away again; Point of Ayre, a contrasting, concise, miniature featuring a solo oboe to concentrate the music on a single voice, backed by a transparent orchestration, played reflectively; and Peel, played vivace (very lively) and featuring a recurring (ritornello) idea that suggests the peal of bells. There is a more lyrical second subject, which remains in the same tempo, to maintain energy, before it all concludes in great celebration.’


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