Navid Nuur, "These are the days" (2004-2010)

Navid Nuur, "These are the days" (2004-2010)

le socrú

le socrú (Irish Gaelic: to fix, arrange, determine) was written in response to a photograph of a sequence of progressively burnt matches by the Iranian-born Dutch artist, Navid Nuur. The music seeks to find a parallel with Nuur’s process and imagery: a sequence of slow-burning, descending phases (later ascending) are punctuated by short eruptions and a powerful long crescendo in the centre of the piece.

In some ways I have taken quite a literal approach to responding to this piece. The piece is written in 6 distinct episodes that are composed of so-called ‘trajectory elements’ - linear interval contractions and descending melodies, slow-paced crescendos etc. Episodes 1,2, 3 and 5 each end with an interruption of these trajectory-designs, where I have taken space to evoke new atmospheres of latent flammability in the photograph by characterful timbral and harmonic exploration.

The original version of this piece was premiered by violist, Stephen Upshaw at the Phantom Fuel exhibition in Parasol Unit Foundation, and then later the piece was rewritten for violin and electronics, and given its new premiere by violinist Darragh Morgan at the Soundings Festival in the Austrian Cultural Forum, London.