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We had other problems, of a family nature, moreover, which required us
to sell our London house, find another property, and move as it were both
household and business during this period -- a gigantic strain which finally
had us packing not only for three 12-hour days, but eventually for 24 hours
non-stop, finishing just as the removal men's pantechnicon pulled up outside.
(I hope this very brief sketch will persuade you that a composer does not
generally have the privilege of inhabiting an ivory tower.)
As I write this, the full score has been finished for about a month,
and so have the piano score and the conductor's score. The parts are currently
being copied (computer technology has made life vastly easier, but nevertheless
such things are not produced at the touch of a button, as is popularly believed).
The ballet itself is being created 'on the dancers' as the ballet world
puts it, and that part is entirely out of John's hands, as, obviously are
the arts of lighting, sets and costume design, represented, as with Edward
II and the first part of Arthur, by Peter Mumford, Peter Davison
and Jasper Conran respectively. Until the orchestral rehearsals start John
will have little more input, and even then, of course, the music will be
under the capable direction of Paul Murphy, the conductor. As for the ballet
itself, it will be nearly as new to him as to the audience, at the première
on May 9 at Sadler's Wells.
Copyright © 24 April 2001
Monica McCabe, Kent, UK
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RODERIC DUNNETT'S IMPRESSIONS OF 'ARTHUR PART 1'
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