Different ideas revolve around each other, expanding and contracting. The mood is that of a Ceremonial, like a procession, but which seems to go nowhere. This short piece is scored for a Beethoven-sized orchestra, and it is dedicated to the West Autralian Symphony Orchestra.
I had dreamt the idea of Little Ceremonial as a procession apparently going nowhere. The notes of Little Ceremonial all come from a 25-note palindrome. The basis of the palindrome is a Greek text I had seen on a fountain in Istanbul: NIΨON ANOMHMATA MH MONAN OΨIN – “Wash the sins, not only the face”. Every note of Little Ceremonial is based on this palindrome and the various palindromic ideas rotate around each other. However, the complete set of twenty-five notes is never reached thereby giving the aural impression of the work going nowhere, reflecting the experience of my dream. I had been listening closely to Handel while writing this piece, but his influence only shows in the ceremonial processional nature of the piece as a whole. Little Ceremonial was the last thing I wrote before a recent very serious illness.