Violin Concerto, op. 70
back to top

The Violin Concerto was the hardest effort to exteriorize and realize from all this intermeshed and struggling time.  And this despite its character of hedonistic / amorous volupté:   presiding genii the cycle of Windows written by Rilke in French, the chalourous interiors of Bonnard, the contained ardour of Fauré;  all these within a hommage to John Ashbery directly inspired by the lovely glass, stained and clear, in his upstate New York house.  Again I thought for months at a time that the piece would never make it — especially when the impetuous John Drummond suddenly wanted it for that year's Proms when I was still stuck in a Sargasso Sea of miserable stagnation. 

Yet, in the end, none of this matters, of course.  The composer lives on to fight again, always back to square one with every renewed enterprize of any size;  always hoping to raise the stakes:  and the Concerto itself radiates throughout its unbroken 40-minute span as one of sustained felicity absolutely opposite to the state of mind that brought it into being. 

back to top
back to top back to top
profile page compositions page transcriptions page links page email Robin Holloway
back to top