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John Casken

(b. 1949)


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(b Barnsley, 1949).

Eng. composer. Lect., Birmingham Univ. 1973–9, Huddersfield Polytechnic 1979–81, Durham Univ. 1981–92. Prof. of mus., Manchester Univ. from 1992. Featured composer at Bath Fest. 1980 where his mus. created a strong impression through its individuality, while suggesting to critics the influences of Debussy and Tippett. Won first Britten Award for comp., 1991. Prin. works incl.:

operas:

Golem

(1988–9);

God's Liar

(1996–2000).

orch.:

Tableaux des Trois Ages

(1976–7); pf. conc. (1980–1);

Masque

, ob., 2 hns., str. (1982);

Erin

, db., small orch. (1982–3);

Orion over Farne

(1984);

Maharal Dreaming

(1989); vc. conc. (1991);

Darting the Skiff

, str. (1993);

Cor d'œuvre

, ov. (1993); vn. conc. (1994–5);

Sortilège

(1995–6);

Distant Variations

, sax. qt., wind orch. (1996–7); sym. (Broken Consort) (2003–4);

Rest‐Ringing

, str. qt., orch. (2005).

ensemble:

Kagura

, 13 wind instr. (1972–3);

Music for the Crabbing Sun

, fl., ob., vc., hpd. (1974);

Music for a Tawny‐Gold Day

, va., alto sax., bass cl., pf. (1975–6);

Arenaria

, fl., ens. (1976);

Amarantos

, 9 players (1977–8);

Melanos

, tuba, 7 players (1979);

Eructavit

, 10 instr. (1982);

Fonteyn Fanfares

, 12 brass instr. (1982);

Vaganza

, ens. (1985);

Infanta Maria

, ens. (1993–4);

Après un silence

, vn., ens. or vn., chamber orch. (1998).

voice & instr(s).:

Ia Orana, Gauguin

, sop., pf. (1978);

Firewhirl

, sop., 7 players (1979–80);

To the Lovers' Well

, counterten., 2 ten., bass (2001);

Colloque sentimental

, sop., pf. (2003).

choral mus.:

To Fields We Do Not Know

, ch. (1984);

Sunrising

, unacc. ch. (1993).

chamber music:

str. qts. No.1 (1981–2), No.2 (1993);

Music for Cello and Piano

(1971–2);

Jadu

, 2 vc. (1973);

Fluctus

, vc., pf. (1973–4);

Thymehaze

, alto rec., pf. (1976);

À Belle Pavine

, vn., tape (1980);

Taerset

, cl., pf. (1982–3);

Clarion Sea

, brass quintet (1985); pf. qt. (1990);

A Spring Cadenza

, vc. (1995);

Après un silence

, vn., pf. (1998, see also ensemble);

Nearly Distant

, sax. qt. (2000); pf. trio (2002);

Blue Medusa

, bn., pf. (2002);

Choses en moi

, str. qt. (2003).

keyboard:

Ligature

, org. (1979–80);

The Haunting Bough

, pf. (1999).

Subjects: Music.


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