Buckingham Concerto No.5 for piano duet
Each of my 5 Buckingham Concertos were written for talented young soloists.
No.5 is for piano duet (4 hands at 1 piano) and is, as far as I know, one of only 2 such concertos, the other being by Malcolm Arnold. The slow movement has an important part for vibraphone.
There will be a performance of Buckingham Concerto no.5 at Stowe School, Buckingham on November 10th 2013.
Delighted to see 'Dancing Bears' is on the new Trinity Grade 2 syllabus. I seem to recall writing this jolly piece on a sunny afternoon in Cambridge!
Here's a great performance by Jonathan Howse with me doing my best on piano!
All the other pieces in the Summer Sketches suite can be found by clicking the 'List of Works' tab.
Improve your Sight-Reading (Piano Initial) Trinity Edition
Delighted to announce that the new 'Improve you Sight-Reading' for Piano Trinity Edition (Initial - Grade 5) is out now.
A couple of year's ago I wrote a short guide to accompany the sight-reading books; you can download this free from the Blog area of this website.
Look for the Blog dated 21st April 2013.
All the string sight-reading series have now been updated and are all available (from all good music shops!)
Thought we'd feature 'Clarinet Basics' this week as I'm just putting the final touches to a completely new edition. The content remains the same, but the layout has been much updated and is full of fun Simultaneous Learning activities, a wordsearch and even a crossword!
I've also written some very comprehensive teacher's notes, which will be available as a free download.
My teacher's teacher's teacher was the great nineteenth century clarinet virtuoso / composer Henry Lazarus. Four 'generations' spanning over a century is explained by the fact that Lazarus and his pupil George Anderson both lived into their nineties and taught right through their long and illustrious lives.
I'm not altogether sure exactly what the legacy handed down by these great players and teachers is; but it is nevertheless very inspiring to feel that one's link with the traditions of the past is so tangible. In Swiftly, I've tried to exploit both the robust (almost demonic in this case!) and lyrical sides of the clarinet's personality and there is also a certain French flavour (I'm a real devotee of Les Six!) colouring the music from time to time. Henry Lazarus mostly wrote studies or long sets of variations (often with copious numbers of notes) based on popular tunes of the day (the National Anthem for example) Swiftly, maintaining the tradition, is a bit of a tour de force in keeping with the Lazarus legacy, but in contrast, is certainly quite playable!
Of all the possible images, situations, stories (and anything else that pieces might be based on) perhaps the most attractive is food! And within that category it's chocolate that probably takes the biscuit!
When my friend the great flute teacher and player Sally Adams asked for a new collection of pieces a few years ago the idea of basing them on what you might find in a Chocolate Box came in a flash. I had a lot of fun writing these, and there are some interesting connections to be found among them - the Faure Sicilienne and a Joplin-like rag for example. And the necessary research was, of course, delicious.
Improve your Sight-Reading! Piano Duets Grade 0-1
Perhaps the funniest collection of pieces I've ever produced!
The titles are completely outrageous!!!
The pupils pieces and stages are designed in parallel with the appropriate Improve your Sight-Reading books. But the really special feature here of course, is that there is a fun second part, for teacher or another (slightly more advanced) pupil.
The pieces are very characterful and (I hope) very appealing. Pupils should really look forward to their sight-reading!
Four of this set of five pieces were inspired by pupils of mine who made up a clarinet quartet I was coaching at the time.
Rather like Nielsen (and indeed Elgar) who often depicted the personalities of his friends in music he wrote for them, I have tried to do bring the character of these four fine players to life in Visions. As such, they need to be played with tremendous character and imagination.
This work was commissioned by The Orchard Trio (flute, oboe, piano) for their tenth anniversary and subsequently recorded by them on a celebratory CD called 'Decade'.
Whilst not particularly programmatic these pieces represent the spirit of Summer - warmth, golden colours, and cheerfulness.
Buckingham Concerto No.1 for 2 oboes & 2 clarinets
I wrote the first of my five Buckingham Concertos (for two oboes and two clarinets) for a group of very enthusiastic pupils who had performed both the Vivaldi works for this combination and wanted another one!
Each concerto is for soloists, strings and one extra instrument to add colour and character - in this case, it's a harpsichord. The three movements follow the basic shape of a Baroque concerto.
Paul Harris List of Works
Associate sites & sites of interest
Educational Series (Grades 1-8)
Educational series: Improve your Aural!
The very thought of aural, especially in examinations, strikes fear into the heart of many young pianists and instrumentalists. But aural should not be an occasional optional extra, it's something to be developing all the time, because having a good ear will help you to improve as a musician more than any other single musical skill.
A collection of Published & Unpublished Articles
Diary & Events: March 2013 onwards
Date Sunday 7th July 2013 (TBA)
LocationHartwell House, nr. Aylesbury
Date Wednesday 12th June 2013
Date Tuesday 28th May 2013 (11.00am)
LocationTrinity College of Music, London
Date Friday 24th May 2013 (TBA)
Date Sunday 19th May 2013 (12.30pm)
LocationG Live, London Road, Guildford
Date Saturday 18th May 2013 (9am onwards)
LocationCanterbury, St Edmund's School
Date Tuesday 14th May 2013 (7.00pm)
Date Sunday 28th April 2013
Date Wednesday 24th April 2013
Date Thursday 18th April 2013 (18th-21st April)
Date Wednesday 17th April 2013 (10.30-12.30)
Date Tuesday 16th April 2013 (11-1pm)
Date Sunday 14th April 2013 (11.00)
Date Sunday 7th April 2013 (9.30)
Date Sunday 7th April 2013 (12.30)
Date Thursday 4th April 2013
Date Friday 29th March 2013
Date Thursday 28th March 2013 (9.45)
Date Thursday 14th March 2013
LocationDubai and Abu Dhabi
Date Sunday 10th March 2013
Date Saturday 2nd March 2013
Malcolm Arnold Festival 2013
"I think of music in terms of sound"
Sat 19th - Sun 20th October
A celebration of Sir Malcolm's great music across many of his most popular genres, including music from the movies, ballet, music for children ensemble music and an especial focus this year on his concertos.
- Purple Dust (iii) O'Killigans lilt
- Scherzetto For Clarinet & Piano
- Suite Bourgeoise: Movement No.5
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Paul Harris, creator of Simultaneous Learning, teacher, writer, clarinettist and composer. Join the conversation