Sunday, 29 September 2013

And ...

Two weeks ago the London Sinfonietta held a special concert in which they played and displayed a selection of pieces that could be written on one side of a postcard. Along with around 370 other composers I submitted my own postcard, with a piece laid out in the form of an ampersand.

I’ve always been attracted to the visual possibilities of music notation. This also fascinated Medieval and Renaissance composers. Here is one of the most famous examples, dating from the early fifteenth century, with the whole piece represented in pictorial format. It’s by the French composer Baude Cordier and is called Belle bonne sage.

Having done one of these now, I’m very interested in making more short pieces in this way.


  1. I like the idea of music on the page being something beautiful to look at as well as to play. Musical calligraphy!

    1. The idea of the whole process, from initial composition to the final score reflecting my own ideas on notation and layout are an essential part of what I do. The invention of music software has been a wonderful thing in many ways, but it has largely destroyed the art of musical calligraphy.