October 1, 2023

"It's A Long Way" wins 1st Prize

I'm excited to announce that my newest choral work, "It's a Long Way" has won 1st Prize in the 2023 Phoenix Boys Choir New Works Rising Competition. The piece will be awarded a cash prize and receive its world premiere with the Phoenix Boys Choir under the direction of Herbert Washington in May 2024.

Here are the powerful lyrics by William Stanley Braithwaite

It’s a long way the sea-winds blow
   Over the sea-plains blue,—
But longer far has my heart to go
   Before its dreams come true.

It’s work we must, and love we must,
   And do the best we may,
And take the hope of dreams in trust
   To keep us day by day.

It’s a long way the sea-winds blow—
   But somewhere lies a shore—
Thus down the tide of Time shall flow
   My dreams forevermore.

My musical setting brings Braithwaite's timeless words to life with vivid musical imagery. The piece opens with a sonic seascape in which palm rubbing and unvoiced sibilants to evoke the sound of seashells and the foaming waves. A distant flute summons the winds of hope, the piano accompaniment cascades warm, open harmonies and a nautical tune builds up to a canon of joyous melodies in counterpoint. Allow yourself to be carried away down the tides of time by this powerful work.