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Four world premieres given by trumpet star

Works by composer Nigel Clarke, Anthony G Morris, Ailis Ni Riain and Timothy Jackson have been performed by Liverpool Philharmonic trumpeter Brendan Ball.

Brendan Ball
 

Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra co-principal trumpet player Brendan Ball recently gave a remarkable solo performance at the Music Room of the city's Philharmonic Hall.

His 'Not just a Trumpet' recital saw him deliver four world premieres utilising electronic backing alongside projections, a short film shot in Berlin and narrative accompaniment.

Two hour performance

The two hour performance included first performances of Nigel Clarke's 'Magritte Fantasy' with poems by Martin Westlake, and 'Welstadt 2' by Anthony G Morris, which included the use of a brand new brass instrument called the Morrishorn.

There were also performance firsts of 'Treasured' by Ailis Ni Riain, which included pre-recorded accompaniment by the Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, and Timothy Jackson's 'Mari's Tango' for flugel horn and electro-acoustics. In addition there was a welcome reprise of 'The Transistor Radio of Saint Narcissus' by Tim Souster.

Acclaimed

Over the past few years Brendan has been involved in many critically acclaimed world premieres and is a leading supporter and performer of contemporary music.

He told 4BR: "The concert was the latest in a series I have promoted and performed — ones which are gaining an increasingly diverse and supportive audience base.

They also give me a wonderful opportunity to showcase the talents of remarkable composers, and works from the likes of Nigel, Anthony, Ailis and Timothy, alongside Tim Souster are a privilege to perform."

The concert was the latest in a series I have promoted and performed — ones which are gaining an increasingly diverse and supportive audience baseBrendan Ball

Act and perform

He added: "Nigel's composition is linked loosely linked to the material found in his superb Cornet Concerto 'Mysteries of the Horizon' inspired by the surrealist Belgian painter, Rene Magritte, whilst 'Walstadt 2' can be described as 'accessible theatre entertainment'.

It required me to act as well as perform — including on that incredible new instrument designed especially for the composition.

'Treasured' was written Ailis Ni Riain and marked the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic and was initially a large scale work which featured a recorded brass quintet with solo trumpet voice, whilst 'Mari's Tango' (above) was written for Dance Northern Ireland, and originally choreographed by the American dancer Mari MacKenzie using Flamenco-style movement to Tango-style music.

In reference to Mari's heritage, the main melody is adapted from one of her favourite Jewish folksongs."

Privilege

He concluded: "It was a great privilege to be able to premiere these works, and it was also great to be able to return to Tim Souster's, 'The Transistor Radio of St Narcissus' which was originally commissioned by John Wallace way back in 1983."

Brendan now hopes to feature more new works in 2016 as he continues to lead the way in live performances of contemporary brass music.

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Howard J Evans

MA (Dist), Mus.B (hons), ARCM (hons), LRAM, LTCL, PGCE
Conductor, composer, arranger, tutor and pianist


               

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