Publisher: Novello & Co
Parsing Variations (2010)
Commissioned by Oundle Music Trust for ‘Oundle for Organists’ with support from PRS for Music Foundation and Arts Council England. First performed by Robert Quinney on Saturday 24th July, 2010, as part of the Oundle International Festival.
Novello & Co Ltd
In computer science and linguistics ‘parsing’ is the process of analyzing a text (or set of instructions), made of a sequence of tokens (for example, words), to determine its grammatical or syntactical structure. I’ve tried to couple this idea with that of the traditional idea of theme and variations. The theme in this case was provided by Jenny Barry, the winner of a competition held by the Oundle International Festival and ‘Oundle for Organists’, inviting young musicians aged 16 and under and living in East Northamptonshire to compose a theme that could be used in this and future ‘Oundle for Organists’ commissions. Instead of explicitly stating this theme at the start of the piece and working from there, I’ve taken some of the most identifiable elements of Jenny Barry’s thematic idea and used them in various ways to slowly build up, incrementally, the structure of the work as a whole.