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Song and Dance was written for the 60th birthday of the composer’s friend and colleague James Wishart, and was first performed by Ensemble 10/10 in a celebratory concert in October 2016. At the outset a relaxed, slow song is intoned by a soprano saxophone (a favourite instrument of James) accompanied by vibraphone and strings. After a couple of stanzas this is interrupted by dance-like material, whose ‘Caledonian feel’ is intended to reflect James’s ancestry and his keen interest in folk music. In due course the dance slips away and the song makes a brief return. Both of the piece’s sections draw, in different ways, on the numbers in the date of James’s birth – 24(0)756.
Music example (pdf)