List of Works
An experienced orchestral composer, with twelve works having received performances, Alan Charlton's output includes Look and Bow Down, for choir, soloists and orchestra, Violin Concerto, which has been performed by both Christopher George and Marcus Barcham-Stevens, the overture The Tide of Time and the SPNM-shortlisted Concerto for Two Cellos and Orchestra. Other large ensemble works include Concertino for string ensemble, performed by the Mikkeli City Orchestra, Finland, The Golden Bough, a chamber opera written for soloists, chorus and 14 instrumentalists, Three Portraits for ten-piece brass ensemble and A Bedford Overture for wind orchestra.
- Look and Bow Down - see Choral
- Ode (2002)
- symphony orchestra (2222.4331, perc. (2 players), timp, strings), 9'
- fp: Bedford School First Orchestra/Andrew Morris, Bedford School, Bedford, 5.7.02
The Tide of Time (2000)
- symphony orchestra (3222.4331, harp, piano, perc. (2 players), timp, strings), 12'
- fp: Bedford School First Orchestra/Andrew Morris, Bedford School, Bedford, 30.6.00
- sp: New Bristol Sinfonia/Jon James, Victoria Rooms, Bristol, 15.9.01
Violin Concerto (1993, revised 1998)
- violin solo and chamber orchestra (2222.2200, harp, percussion (2 players), strings), 23'
- fp: Chris George, University of Bristol Operatic Society Orchestra/Jonathan Lyness, 6.11.93, St George's Brandon Hill, Bristol
- sp: Marcus Barcham-Stevens, Avon Sinfonia/Owen Leech, 13.12.98, Hope Centre, Hotwells, Bristol
Concerto for Two Cellos and Orchestra (1995/6)
- 2 cello soloists, chamber orchestra (2222.2200, harp, perc. (1 player), strings), 25'
- fp: Betsy Taylor, Harriet Cawood, University of Bristol Chamber Orchestra/Jon James, 31.1.96, Victoria Rooms, Bristol
- selected for SPNM shortlist (1999)
A Latymer Overture (1995)
- symphony orchestra, 12'
- fp: University of Bristol Symphony Orchestra, 21.6.95, Wills Memorial Building, Bristol
- sp: Latymer and Godolphin Orchestra, 11.11.95, St Paul's Church, Hammersmith, London
Three Songs for Soprano and Orchestra (1991)
- soprano solo, chamber orchestra, 14'
- settings of Christina Rosetti, Laurence Binyan & E.E.Cummings
- fp: Rachel Skinner, University of Bristol Operatic Society Orchestra/Jonathan Lyness, 3.11.91, St George's Brandon Hill, Bristol
Four Inky Sketches - see Educational
(Songs of Summer (1992) - Withdrawn)
- soprano and orchestra, 10'
- fp: Lucy Brown, University of Bristol Operatic Society Orchestra/Owen Leech, 31.10.92, St George's Brandon Hill, Bristol
(Symphony no.1, First Movement (1988-9) - Withdrawn)
- symphony orchestra, 12'
- fp: Latymer Upper School Orchestra, March 1989, St Paul's Church, Hammersmith
- sp: Latymer and Godolphin Orchestra, April 1989, Hamburg
(Scherzo for Orchestra (1987) - Withdrawn)
- symphony orchestra, 11'
- fp: Latymer Upper School Orchestra, March 1988, St Paul's Church, Hammersmith
- Bedford Festival Overture (1999)
- wind band, 10'
- fp: Bedford School Band/Guy Bennett, Great Hall, Bedford School Bedford, 27.11.99
- The Golden Bough (1994)
- baritone and 2 tenor soloists, SATB chorus and chamber ensemble (1111 1000 perc (2), hp, pno, 11111), 17'
- fp: Ian Caddy, Christopher Leemings, University of Bristol New Music Ensemble/Jonathan Lyness, 12.5.94, Glyn Wickham Theatre,
- selected for SPNM shortlist (1999)
Heads off for Henry - See Educational
The best known of Charlton's chamber works is the critically acclaimed String Quartet no.1, commissioned by the Cat Quartet for the 1994 Harrogate International Festival, and which has been since been performed by The Lindsays, the Quince Quartet and the Mikkeli String Quartet of Finland, and selected for the 1995 Manchester Composers' Platform. Quintetto was awarded first prize in the National Power Composers' Competition in 1995 and performed by Birmingham Contemporary Music Group in 1997. The cellist Bernard Gregor-Smith has commissioned several pieces, including Duo Concertant, Sonata for Cello and Piano for the Music in the Round Festival and Studies for Piano Trio.
Chamber music involving guitar includes Partita for the Pro Arte Guitar Trio, Suite for Cello and Guitar for Richard Hand and Leonid Gorokhov and Cançion del Oeste for guitar trio. Étude for solo horn received an honorary mention in the 2003 International Horn Society composition competition and has been published by IHS Press, while Charlton's Clarinet Quartet was chosen as 'Clarinet Quartet of the Year' by the London Chamber Group.
- Fantasy (2011)
- three pianists at two or three pianos, 13'30
- four pianists at two or four pianos, 15'00
Variations on She'll be Coming Round the Mountain (2010)
String Quartet no.2 (2008)
- guitar trio: requinto guitar, guitar, 8-string guitar, 12'
- fp: Pro Arte Guitar Trio, 14.7.04, Purcell Room, London
- first broadcast: Pro Arte Guitar Trio, 12.7.04, 'In Tune', Radio 3
Miniatures for Piano Trio (2004)
- violin, cello, piano, 15'
- fp: Onslow Ensemble (Bernard Gregor-Smith, Susanne Stanzeleit, Yolande Wrigley), 1.5.04, St Elphin's School, Matlock
Clarinet Quartet (2002)
- 2 clarinets in B flat, clarinet in A, bass clarinet, 11'
- fp: Bedford School Clarinet Quartet, 15.2.02, St Martin-in-the-Fields, London
- sp: Bedford School Clarinet Quartet, 5.3.02, St Paul's Church, Bedford
- tp: Bedford School Clarinet Quartet, 30.6.02, Great Hall, Bedford School
Concertino (1992, revised 2001)
- string ensemble (33221), 8'
- fp: University of Bristol New Music Ensemble/Adrian Beaumont, 5.5.93, Wills Memorial Building, Bristol
- Finnish Premiere: Mikkeli City Orchestra/Alexander Walker, 8.2.01, Mikkeli, Finland
- Selected for SPNM shortlist (1992)
Three Portraits (2000)
- brass ensemble (4 tpts, hn, 3 tbns, euph, tba), 11'
- fp: Bedford School Brass Ensemble/Alan Charlton, 16.3.01, St Martin-in-the-Fields, London
Cancion del Oeste (2000)
Quintetto (1995, revised 1996)
- fl, cl, pno, vn, vc, 10'
- fp: Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, 5.7.97, Warwick & Leamington Spa Festival
- winner of National Power Young Composers Award (Go West Festival, September 1995)
- selected onto SPNM shortlist (1996)
String Quartet no.1 (1994, revised 1995 and 2005)
- string quartet, 14'
- fp: Cat String Quartet, 5.8.94, Harrogate International Festival
- fp of 1st revised version: Lindsay String Quartet, 5.10.95, Manchester Composers Platform
- fp of 2nd revised version: Quince Quartet, 31.7.05, Cratfield Festival
- Finnish premiere: Soloists from Mikkeli City Orchestra, 10.5.01, Mikkeli Chamber Music Hall, Mikkeli, Finland
- selected for inclusion in Manchester Composers Platform, October 1995
- reviews: The Times, 6.8.94; The Times, 9.10.95; Musical Opinion, Winter 1995
Wind Trio no.1 - see Educational
Wedding Fanfare - see Incidental/Occasional
Bacchanale - see Incidental/Occasional
(Clarinet Trio (1993) - Withdrawn)
(Romanza for String Quartet (1992) - Withdrawn)
- cl, pno, vc, 8'
- fp: De Sarum Trio, 7.5.93, University of Bristol Music Department
- string quartet, 10'
- fp: Uroboros Ensemble, 8.5.92, University of Bristol Music Department
(Introduction, Allegro and Postlude (1992) - Withdrawn)
- hn, hp, perc(1), vc, 8'
- fp: Uroboros Ensemble, 31.1.92, Wills Memorial Building, Bristol
(Movement for String Quartet (1992) - Withdrawn)
- string quartet, 4'
- fp: Scottish Chamber Orchestra String Quartet, 5.8.92, Hoy Kirk, Orkney
- Fugue on Domus Pater (2011)
- piano duet, 5'
- fp: Tim Watts, Jeremy Rouse, 19.6.11, Bedford School
Duo for Eclectica! (2008)
Phantasy Duo (2008)
A Bedford Overture (2008)
- piano duet, 9'
- fp: Tim Watts, Charles Martin, 21.2.08, Bedford School
Suite for Cello and Guitar (2005)
- gtr, vc, 22'
- commissioned by Richard Hand and Leonid Gorokhov, who will give the first performance
- horn solo, 7'
- fp: Jeremy Bushell, BBCSSO Friends Concert, 20.10.03, BBC Scotland, Glasgow
- Honorary mention in International Horn Society Composition Competition, 2003
- Published by International Horn Society Press
Coronation Dance (2001)
- piano duet, 5'
- cello and piano, 5'
- piano solo, 5'
Sonata for Cello and Piano (1999)
- vc, pno, 20'
- fp: Bernard Gregor-Smith/Yolande Wrigley, Music in the Round, 19.5.00, Crucible Theatre, Sheffield
Duo Concertant (1997)
- vc, pno, 14'
- fp: Bernard Gregor-Smith & Yolande Wrigley, 8.5.97, University of Manchester
Suite for Harp (1997, revised 1998)
Suite for Clarinet (1996/7)
- solo clarinet in A, 14'
- fp: Martin Ronchetti, 15.12.96, RMA Postgraduate Conference, University of Cardiff
Eileen Norris' Notebook - see Educational
(Soliloquy for Solo Viola (1992) - Withdrawn)
- solo viola, 7'
- fp: Richard Crabtree, 17.6.92, Clifton College, Bristol
Charlton's most substantial choral work is the 30 minute cantata for choir, soloists and chamber orchestra, Look and Bow Down, commissioned for the 450th anniversary of Christ's Hospital school, and performed to a sell-out audience at the Barbican in March 2003. Classical Music magazine selected it as one of their 'Premieres of the Year', calling it 'an outstanding work'. Other prizewinning choral works include Earth, Sweet Earth for choir and strings, awarded the Premiere Composition Prize and first performed by the William Byrd Singers and Capriccio in 1998, and Jubilate Deo, for choir, brass and organ, winner of the 2004 John Armitage Memorial Prize.
A cappella choral works include A Solis Ortus Cardine, a prizewinner in the 2001 European Composition Competition for Cathedral Choirs, Bring us Good Ale, a winner of the 2007 John Armitage Memorial Prize, Psalm 81, and Moyo Wangu, which was met with a rapturous reception at its Tanzanian premiere in 2009.
- Fugue on Domus Pater (2011)
- Unison choir, brass quintet, organ, 5'
The Snow in the Street (2011)
- SATB choir, 5'30
- fp: Kelvedon Singers, Chris Phelps, 11.12.11, St Peter's Church, Wakes Colne, Essex
Two Cricket Canons (2011)
- SSAATTBB choir, 4'
- fp: Ishirini, Jeremy Rouse, Kolkata and Kalimpong, India, April 2011
Bring us Good Ale (Revised Version) (2011)
Moyo Wangu (2009)
Psalm 81 (2007)
- SSAATTBB choir, 5'
- fp: Ishirini, Jeremy Rouse, 3.4.09, Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania
- sp: Ishirini, Jeremy Rouse, 20.9.09, Queens' College Chapel, Cambridge
- SSAATTBB choir, 6'
- fp: Bristol University Singers, Stephen Kings, 26.11.08, Victoria Rooms, Bristol
Bring Us Good Ale (2006)
- 1) SSAATTBB choir, 5'
- 2) SSAATTBB, brass quintet (2 tpts, hn, tbn, tba), 5'
- fp: 2) Selwyn College Chapel Choir, Onyx Brass, Nicholas Cleobury, 21.03.07, St Bride's, London
- John Armitage Memorial Prize (2007)
Jubilate Deo (2002-3)
- 1) SATB choir, brass ensemble (4 tpts, 3 tbns, tba), timp., perc (1), organ, 5'30
- 2) SATB choir, brass quintet (2 tpts, hn, tbn, tba), perc (1), organ, 5'30
- fp: 1) Daventry Choral Society, Bristol Brass Consort/Alexander Walker, 28.6.03, Daventry Tertiary College
- fp: 2) Selwyn College Chapel Choir, Onyx Brass, Daniel Hyde/Sarah MacDonald & Nicholas Cleobury, 18.3.04, St Bride's, London, 1.7.04, St Mary the Great, Cambridge, 10.7.04, St Cuthbert's Church, Edinburgh
- John Armitage Memorial Prize (2004)
Look and Bow Down (2002-3)
- soprano and tenor soloists, SATB choir, orchestra (2232.2210, hp, pno, timp, perc. (2), strings), 27'
- fp: Eleanor Meynell, John Bowley, Christ's Hospital School Orchestra/Bruce Grindlay, 25.3.03, The Barbican
- selected as one of Classical Music Magazine's 'Premieres of the Year', December 2003
Te Lucis Ante Terminum (2001)
A Solis Ortus Cardine (1999)
- ATB choir, 2'
- fp: Bedford School Chapel Choir/Bruce Grindlay, 24.5.01, Bedford School Chapel, Bedford
- SSAATTBB choir, 4'
- fp: William Byrd Singers/Stephen Wilkinson, 14.12.99, Gatley, Manchester
- 2nd Prize in 4ème Concours Européen de Composition pour Choeurs et Matrîses de Cathédrales, Categorie I, Choeur mixte (2001)
A Babe is Born (1998/99)
- children's choir and organ, 4'
- fp: Bedford School Chapel Choir/Bruce Grindlay, 12.12.99, Bedford School Chapel
Earth, Sweet Earth (1998)
(Three Pastoral Songs (1996) - Withdrawn)
- SATB choir and strings, 18'
- fp: William Byrd Singers, Cappriccio/Stephen Wilkinson, 22.11.98, Royal Northern College of Music
- winner of 'Premiere' Composers Competition for William Byrd Singers and Capriccio (1998)
- Night of the Dance (1999)
- baritone, pno, 5'
- fp: William Vann & Tom Ellis, 21.2.00, Bedford School, Bedford
- sp: William Vann & Tom Ellis, 3.3.00, St Martin-in-the-Fields
- tp: David Todd and Nigel Nash, 31.7.04, Victoria Rooms, Bristol
A Babe is Born (1998)
- soprano, pno, 4'
- fp: Charlotte Newstead & Anthony Pinell, 14.12.98, Colston Hall, Bristol
- soprano, pno, 5'
- fp: Janet Price & Anthony Saunders, 29.1.93, Wills Memorial Building, Bristol
(The Unbeholden Land (1997) - Withdrawn)
Alan Charlton has written extensively for younger performers, including 19 works for Bedford School. These range from the popular cantata for children's choir and small ensemble, Heads off for Henry, the cycle of piano pieces Eileen Norris's Notebook and the carol A Babe is Born. A well-known writer in the field of music education, he has written standard textbooks on GCSE and A level composition, a book called 'How to Read Music', and contributed to several A level study guides and an encyclopedia of musical instruments. He is also a regular contributor to Classroom Music.
- Fluet (2003)
- 2 fl or any 2 instruments of similar range, 1'
- Commissioned for the ABRSM Music Medals Flute Publication
Concerto Semplice (2002)
Heads off for Henry (2001)
- solo string quartet and strings, 6'
- fp: Bedford School First Orchestra/Alan Charlton, 5.7.02, Bedford School, Bedford
- sp: Bedford School Preparatory Schools Festival Orchestra/Andrew Morris, 5.11.02, Bedford School, Bedford
- children's choir, child soloists and ensemble (cl, vln, vc, hp, pno, perc.) or CD, 45'
- fp: Bedford Preparatory School years 3-4, cond. Charles Martin, Erskine May Hall, Bedford Preparatory School, 14.6.01
- sp: Bedford Preparatory School years 4-5, cond. Charles Martin, Great Hall, Bedford School, 10.5.02
- tp: Bedford Preparatory School years 4-5, cond. Charles Martin, Great Hall, Bedford School, 22.5.02
- fp: Finton House School Year 6, cond. Andy Meyers, Finton House School, London, 17.3.03
- fp: Bedford Modern Preparatory School, cond. Paul Whitmarsh, BMS, 8.5.09
Eileen Norris' Notebook (2000-1)
- 1) piano, 12'
- 2) violin and piano, 10'
- 3) clarinet and piano (1st movement only), 2'
- fp: 2) Charles Turnham/Richard Heyes, Bedford School Music Festival, 22.6.01, Great Hall, Bedford School, Bedford
- fp: 1) Richard Heyes, Nov 2007, Leighton Buzzard Music Club
Four Inky Sketches (2000/2002)
- 1) chamber orchestra (2221, alto sax., 2210, euph., perc. (4 players), timp., strings), 10'
- 2) piano quartet (vln, va, vc, pno), 10'
- fp: 1) Bedford School Prep Schools Festival Orchestra/Charles Martin, Bedford School, Bedford, 20.6.00
- fp: 2) Bedford School Piano Quartet, Bedford School Composer-in-Residence Conference, 22.5.02
- sp: 2) Bedford School Piano Quartet, Great Hall, Bedford School, 30.6.02
Wind Trio no.1 (1988, revised 2000)
- 1) 2 clts, bassoon, 8'
- 2) 2 clts, bass clarinet, 8'
- fp: March 1989, Royal Academy of Music
- sp: March 1989, Latymer Upper School
- tp: Ben Ling, Matthew Johnson, Malcolm Green, Bedford School, Bedford, 27.6.00
- Oculis Omnium (2000)
- SATB or ATB, 1'
- fp: Bedford School Chapel Choir, 28.3.01, Bedford School, Bedford
Wedding Fanfare (2000)
- 2 tpts, tenor horn, tbn, tba, organ, 2'
- fp: 27.5.00, Pettaugh Parish Church
- fl, ob, bsn, hn, hp, vla, 2'
The Marquise (1993)
- Incidental Music to Alfred de Musset's play, "Il faut qu'une porte soit ouverte ou entrée", for
fl, soprano, vc, pno, 10'
- fp: Out to Lunch Theatre Company, May 1993, Bristol Old Vic Basement
- review: Venue Magazine, June 1993
A Busy Day (1993)
- Incidental music for Fanny Burney's "A Busy Day"
- fl, cl, vn, vc, pno, 6'
- fp: Show of Strength Theatre Company, Hen and Chicken Pub Theatre, Sept-Oct 1993;
- sp: Kings Head, Islington, Summer 1994