Duet 1 is a conversation for two instruments. The original title, The Message, derives from a sculpture by Bob Law on which is inscribed 'the purpose of life is to pass the message on'.
Sir Harrison Birtwistle created the first short piece The Message (Duet 1) for the London Sinfonietta in 2008, as a ‘birthday card’ for their 40th anniversary concert. He then decided to write more duets for different occasions over the past few years. Bourdon (Duet 2) for violin and viola was performed at a commemorative event for the publisher Bill Colleran. Duet 3 for cor anglais and bassoon was created as a surprise for a supporter of his work, Nicholas Prettejohn. There are now five pieces in the sequence, and this evolving set may well take other forms in the future as the composer sees fit.
© Andrew Burke Chief Executive, London Sinfonietta
Alistair Mackie trumpet
Mark van de Wiel clarinet
David Hockings percussion
Supported by Robert McFarland
Recorded on 5 December 2014 at Queen Elizabeth Hall, London.
Producer/engineer DANIEL HALFORD and IAN DEARDEN for Sound Intermediate