Commissioned by Making Music

Commissioned by Making Music, and exclusive to Making Music membership choirs until September 2005.

  • piano
  • SATB
  • 15 min

Programme Note

The Kestrel Road was written in 2003 for Making Music, and is a setting for chorus (SATB) and piano of poems by the Orcadian writer, George Mackay Brown. I have welcomed the opportunity to attempt a work which, while being challenging for both chorus and pianist, isn’t so daunting that arduous rehearsals cease to be enjoyable and stimulating. I chose Mackay Brown because I love the visions of Orkney he evokes – I myself have lived there for over thirty years. The music tries to suggest its elusive land and seascapes, and has been much influenced by local folk music, though the tunes are my own.

I would like to thank all the choirs, pianists and conductors who have participated in Making Music’s celebration of my seventieth birthday. I know that early rehearsals can be at times strange and rather difficult, and I very much appreciate the devotion and perseverance needed to make the music succeed. — Peter Maxwell Davies