Robert Howard


for symphony orchestra

2 fl, 2 ob, 2 cl, bcl, 2 bn, 2 hn, 2 tpt, 2 trb, tba, 2 perc, timp, pno, hp, strings

duration: 9 minutes

"Promenade (1996) is the remarkable five-part balletic sculpture by Anthony Caro. This was first seen at the Tuileries Gardens, Paris as part of the exhibition Un Siecle de Sculpture Anglais. It grew out of a large four-part sculpture Night Movements that Caro began nearly ten years earlier. It is a work that engages the spectator, not only as one walks around and weaves in between the elements, but also in the way he has constructed convenient resting places in the hollow forms where one can sit and shelter."

from Anthony Caro-New Sculptures c.Annely Juda Fine Art, London W1

When I first saw Caro's Promenade at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park in 1998, I was struck by the work's immense structural strength. I have attempted to capture such qualities in my piece. The use of a large orchestra in five movements is equivalent to the five large-scale sculptures. Most importantly, the form juxtaposes seemingly unrelated elements while managing to create a homogeneous whole.

Promenade was first performed by the Goldsmiths Sinfonia conducted by Adrian Brown at Goldsmiths College, University of London in June 2000. I have subsequently composed a further four versions of Promenade: Promenade II was recorded by the COMA London ensemble and Promenade III was performed by the COMA National Ensemble conducted by Simon Foxley at Bretton Hall in the grounds of Yorkshire Sculpture Park. Promenade IV was written for the Prommers Orchestra of the Royal Albert Hall and has since been recorded and published by Forum London Composers Group for their Re:Sound pack. Promenade V has been performed extensively by the oboist Paul Burnell.

Rober Howard (b. 1977) is a composer from Merseyside, now living in London. Robert studied at the Royal Northern College of Music, Birmingham University and currently at Goldsmiths College (PhD) with Philip Cashian. He has composed a wide variety of (primarily) instrumental works, from solo pieces to orchestral works.

Robert's music has been played by various ensembles including BCMG, Gemini (Family of Man, Dual Form), City of London Sinfonia (The Island, spnm shortlisted 2000),the Kreutzer Quartet (The Dry Salvages) and IXION. In 1999 his String Quartet No.1. won the Gregynog Young Composer's Award of Wales and his piano music has won first prizes at several music festivals.

Robert also has a keen interest in composing for amateurs; he has composed extensively for fellow students, for several youth orchestras on Merseyside and most notably in the series of pieces titled Promenade and Lines on a Walk. These have been widely performed and recorded by several COMA ensembles.

Robert is also a visiting tutor at Goldsmiths College, a bassoonist and conductor. He is currently chair of the Forum London Composers Group. Robert's Promenade IV was published and recorded by Forum as part of their Re:Sound pack and his music is distributed by Incalcando Contemporary Music Publishing (

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