Commissioned by Tim Redmond
I have had the great pleasure of conducting many of Jeff Moore’s pieces over the years. He has the most amazing ability to compose scores that can be enjoyed equally by beginners and professionals alike – and so I was delighted when he agreed to write Dancing Folk for this project. One of the great joys of music-making is the connections that we make with fellow performers and the friendships that are created in the process. This piece came about because of conversations with colleagues in several countries and the wish to create something that brings us all together in these challenging times.
Composed by Jeff Moore
I’ve always loved the music of Percy Grainger, one of the most brilliant, innovative and eccentric musicians of the Twentieth Century. In so many of his most popular pieces, he takes an unbelievably catchy tune and plays with it over and over in an ever increasingly varied setting. Grainger’s tunes were usually folk tunes he collected himself by cycling around the English countryside, setting up some cumbersome wax cylinder recording equipment and asking unsuspecting locals to sing. Dancing Folk is my tribute to Grainger, except the tunes in this piece are all fake, my own inventions. I wanted to write a piece that’s cheerful and optimistic throughout, in complete contrast to the uncertainty we’ve all become used to in these troubled times. And most importantly, I wanted to write a piece that’s just as fun to play as it (hopefully) is to listen to.
Huge thanks to Tim Redmond for suggesting and commissioning the piece, and to my old friend Paul Englishby who gave me the title.