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Work

Sacred Prelude, op.15 : (Stile antico) for string orchestra

by Jonathan David Little (1984, this version: 2015)

Audio Sample

Performance by Jonathan David Little from the CD Selected Works by AMC Represented Artists, vol. 85.

Selected Works by AMC Represented Artists, vol. 85.

Non-Commercial

This item is not commercially available from the Australian Music Centre. We regret that we cannot offer it for sale.

CD

Selected Works by AMC Represented Artists, vol. 85.

Library shelf no. CD 2878 [Available for loan]

Work Overview

A natural rubato is felt throughout this haunting, single-movement work (initially composed in 1984 for string quintet as "Opus 1", and then newly arranged in 2015 for full string orchestra by Anthony Weeden - in collaboration with the composer - as "Opus 15").

The sound is reminiscent of that of ancient church music. Written in the stile antico, it opens with a "Plainsong", then comes the main central "Anthem". There is a brief reprise of the opening theme, before the work closes with a more emphatic "Fantasia" (where the sense of rubato becomes almost improvisatory). The work, as a whole, may be said to comprise a poignant "prayer" for strings.

Work Details

Year: 1984, this version: 2015

Instrumentation: String orchestra.

Duration: 11 min.

Difficulty: Medium — Some high viola and soft solo violin I passages

First performance: by University of Chichester Chamber Orchestra, Jonathan David Little at University of Chichester Gala Concert (Chichester Cathedral) on 8 Mar 2018

The composer notes the following styles, genres, influences, etc associated with this work:
Historically-informed compositional style has been variously described as "Ecstatic Minimalism", "Archaic Futurism", and “Picturesque Archaism” – blending art music, folk/Celtic, and other sacred and secular musical influences, from as far back as the fourteenth century, with new and innovative textures and orchestration (sometimes also including spatial effects).

Performances of this work

7 Mar 2019: at North/South Consonance (Christ and St Stephen's Church (New York City)). Featuring North/South Chamber Orchestra, Max Lifchitz.

30 Nov 2018: at New Music for Strings (Regent Hall (UK)). Featuring London New Strings, David Sutton-Anderson.

8 Mar 2018: at University of Chichester Gala Concert (Chichester Cathedral). Featuring University of Chichester Chamber Orchestra, Jonathan David Little.

9 Nov 16: featuring Jonathan David Little.

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