Woven was composed in August 2001. Everything in the piece is woven together. The pairs of violins, violas and cellos are wound into strands, moving in close intervals and in intricate rhythmic patterns of unisons and "near misses". These pairs are woven together in turn, in varying degrees of ensemble and opposition. The texture as a whole gets a particular kind of energy from the fluctuations of ensemble within and between the three duos.
The image of weaving also applies to the process of writing, which was more spontaneous than the description above might suggest. I began with about a dozen fragmentary sketches (some rhythmic, others harmonic), worked on them independently and then arranged them into the final composition.
Ian Dickson read music at King’s College, London, studying composition with Ross Lorraine and Sir Harrison Birtwistle. After living and working in Rome and London, he resumed composition studies at York University under the supervision of Dr. John Stringer. Recent performances have included Polyphony, given by the BBC Philharmonic and James MacMillan (broadcast on Hear and Now), and Isthmus for eight players, written for the York Spring Festival and performed by the University New Music Group.
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