Commissioned by the 2022 Presteigne Festival with generous funding from the John S Cohen Foundation. First performed by Amy Dickson, saxophone, and the Presteigne Festival Orchestra conducted by George Vass at St Andrew's Church, Presteigne, on 30 August 2022.
Commissioner exclusivity applies
Unavailable for performance.
Machine began life as a three-minute solo for saxophone, originally written as a preview of the concerto proper: a reduction for one instrument of the kind of musical conversation I envisaged between soloist and orchestra. It was while notating the individual components - cadenza, virtuosity, ensemble, dialogue etc. - which can make up a concerto, all for one solo line, that the image of the genre as a machine of sorts came to mind. This material survives more or less intact in the cadenza heard halfway through the third movement of the concerto, and it is from which all the remaining musical ideas in the concerto stem. The result is a series of tableaux (three movements for the whole ensemble, each preceded by an interlude for chamber forces) which speak with each other across the arc of the entire work. The cadenza can be thought of as the machine within the Machine.
Programme note © 2022 Tarik O’Regan