• Julian Philips
  • Maxamorphosis (2012)
    (Hybrid Dance Concerto for solo viola, dancers and orchestra )

  • Peters Edition Limited (World)
  • va + pic/mba/hp/str(
  • Viola
  • 27 min

Programme Note

Maxamorphosis (2012)
for viola, dancers & chamber orchestra

Chapter 1: Cocoon
Chapter 2: Dialogue, in which max makes his first sound
Chapter 3: in which the infant Max is gently rocked to sleep
Chapter 4: in which Max starts to find a voice
Chapter 5: in which Max grows up and flies the nest
Chapter 6: in which, for a moment, Max looks back
Chapter 7: in which Max loses his bow
Chapter 8: Monologue, in which Max works out a plan
Chapter 9: in which Max makes good without the bow
Chapter 10: Monologue, Max remembering
Chapter 11: in which Max comes to accept his new life
Chapter 12: Following Max’s footsteps

Maxamorphosis was created in 2012 for violist, Max Baillie - who also trained as a dancer – developing out of a collaboration with choreographer Mikael ‘Marso’ Rivière, conductor Nick Collon and the Aurora Orchestra. The work charts Max’s ‘maxamorphosis’ from violist into dancer, explored in a variation stream that develops, evolves and expands.

Max is born in an ensemble of musicians, out of a kind of sleep. A lullaby gently rocks Max. Max is allowed to grow and we see/hear glimpses as Max makes first sounds and takes first steps. Gradually, Max grows up, testing energy and feeling. Max stands on two feet and is ready to fly the nest into a wider world outside of the ensemble.

A set of dances unfold Max’s encounters with this wider world – Max continues to learn and grow. Unexpected events deprive Max of their bow, and then their instrument. Max fights with these changes and circumstances, but gradually re-finds a voice, achieving inner strength and confidence. At the close of the piece, Max has found self-acceptance, and the courage and wisdom to accept whatever life might bring.

Julian Philips, 2023