Ensemble in 4 parts - with optional 5th part
This piece is inspired by the poem ‘Clouds’ by Christina Rosetti which has long been a favourite poem of mine. It has an innate simplicity to it with its gentle nursery rhyme lilt, whilst evoking beautiful images of cloudbusting.
With ‘On a Blue Hill’ I wanted to explore a sound world as if one was lying back on a beautiful Cumbrian hill watching the clouds above; the texture of the music reflecting the different types of clouds. I also wanted to explore how ‘jazzy’ or ‘blue’ the harmony could get without adding any chromatic note changes to the piece.
‘On a Blue Hill’ can be played as a stand alone piece, however it was conceived as the first movement to ‘Black Sheep’ with themes and chord patterns from this piece developed and re-appearing in ‘Black Sheep’. ‘On a Blue Hill’ and ‘Black Sheep’ were composed for Harps North West based in Cumbria.