Nick Casswell

The Trans-formation and Other Stories

for four singers (2 sop, ten, bar) and large ensemble (fl, cl, ssax, asax, 2 hn, tpt, 2 trb, tuba, perc, pf, egui, bgui)

duration: 16 minutes

The first movement of The Trasnformation and Other Stories was written for the 7th International Young Composers Meeting in Holland, and is scored for the Dutch ensemble de Ereprijs and four singers. This work uses a number of Latin maxims, which are used throughout the score, and are translated below. The composition draws on a number of techniques, which return and are developed or "transformed". The most noticeable of these is a hocket technique found in the music of theBanda Linda people, a tribe from Central Africa. At times an aleatoric technique is used, and again this returns at important points throughout the piece. The composition has four movements, the first of which is separate with the other three played in segue.

The Latin maxims that are used are:

Augescunt aliae gentes, aliae minuuntur; inque brevi spatio mutantur saecia animantum et quasi cursores vitae lampada tradunt.
Some people increase, others diminish; and in a short space, the generations of living creatures are changed and like runners pass on the torch of life.
(Lucretius, De Rerum Natura)

Concordia parvae res crescunt, discordia maximae dilabuntur.
Through unity the small thing grows, through disunity the largest thing crumbles.
(Sallust, Jugurtha)

Amantium irae, amoris integratio est.
The anger of lovers is what brings love together.

Omnia vincit amor; et nos cedamus amori.
Love conquers all things; let us too surrender to love.
(Vergil, Eclogae)

Si vis amari, ama.
If you want to be loved, love
(Seneca Philosophus, Epistulae)

Nick Casswell was born in 1974 and is currently a PhD student at the University of Leeds where he was awarded the Audrey Pass Charitable Trust Scholarship and later an AHRB scholarship from the British Academy. In 2000 he was awarded a Samsung/Royal British Legion/BKVA Scholarship for study in South Korea, and it was here that he undertook a years research of Korean folk music, in particular kaya'gum sanjo.

A work for chamber ensemble entitled Chorisis and his string quartet Papillon were selected for the 2000/2001 spnm shortlist. Papillon also won the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society Millennium Music Award. This composition and a work for the Dutch ensemble de Ereprijs and four singers entitled Fragments were performed at the 2001 Gaudeamus Music Week and were later broadcast on Dutch radio. With Fragments he was selected 'most promising composer' at the 7th International Young Composers Meeting in Apeldoorn, Holland led by Louis Andriessen and received a commission for the Dutch ensemble de Ereprijs, which was recently premiered at the 2002 meeting.

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