Doctor of Musical Arts performance portfolio : Howard John Evans

Evans, HJ 2008, Doctor of Musical Arts performance portfolio : Howard John Evans , DMA thesis, University of Salford.

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Abstract

This portfolio submission contains three major performance-based projects with their critical evaluations and details of a public performance completed for the award of Doctor of Musical Arts. The studio recordings of both Projects One and Two represent performances of perceptive and imaginative musical interpretations, which demonstrate artistic stature and excellence. Critical review and testimonial evidence will be provided to justify and support this claim. Project One, namely The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace, is a premiere recording of a large-scale contemporary work in a new transcription. This recording was the culmination of my involvement in the initial concert performances of this work and represents a unique collaboration. Its significance lies in pushing the boundaries of the brass band genre and its integration with other performance disciplines, allowing it to build bridges with the wider music community. This contemporary transcription also follows in the tradition of previous arrangers and gives a developmental and historical framework to the project. I believe it also demonstrates artistic stature and excellence across the wider field of musical forces used, showing a broader scope of awareness and skill, which is not confined to the medium of the brass band. Sanctuary, Project Two, is a unique survey from a major area of the Salvation Army's reflective music. The literature it draws upon is the form known as the Meditation, and a recording of this repertoire has never been previously conceived or produced. Whilst some of the works have been published for many years this project also includes a premiere recording which adds considerable weight to the historically important revival this project represents. This is also attested to and will be further explored in the critical commentary, showing that the performances here give significant new insights into the performance of existing repertoire, which has its own historicity of performance practice. In this way there is a deep personal involvement in this project, as the music recorded has also been used within its original functional conception, i.e. the publications in which these pieces have been produced were printed for the sole purpose of providing suitable material for the regular worship services in which Salvation Army Bands perform. One of the major works, which received its premiere recording in Project Two, provides the thematic link to Project Three, embodied in the composer Ray Steadman-Allen. He enjoys advanced standing in the brass band genre and has made a huge contribution to its repertoire over many years. As a composer he has been one of the most distinctive voices within the brass band scene and especially for the Salvation Army sphere over many years. My personal involvement with the composer over a number of years led to the opportunity to promote a work, which, in its entirety, had never before received a premiere performance, Variants on The Triumph of Peace. The premiering of this work, and therefore my interaction and collaboration with the composer also acted as a creative spur to enable Steadman-Allen to complete one of his latest compositions, Starmaker, so that both works could be premiered at the same concert. The premieres of these two works were recorded live and have been commercially produced in CD format.

Item Type: Thesis (DMA)
Schools: Schools > School of Arts & Media
Depositing User: Institutional Repository
Date Deposited: 17 Aug 2021 08:15
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 21:57
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/61587

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