COMPOSITION

Stephen Beville's music announces no particular theory he wishes to impart (and if anything he would rather evoke an absence of theory). However, Beville's work may broadly be situated in the post-1960s European classical tradition.

Beville is often inspired by philosophy and the other arts (especially poetry, painting and sculpture) and - while he respects each of their claims to autonomous expression and meaning - they often serve as starting points for his own expressive aims. Beville's compositional style makes pervasive use of free chromaticism and a considerable rhythmic and textural variety, although he would hope without some of the 'density overload' of some contemporary expressionist composers. Important for Beville are clear musical structures (sometimes incorporating cross-references); allusions to the classical in the contemporaneous sense of the word, as Gadamer says. No less important to his creative process are the roles played by intuition and improvisation - the search for the new.  Beville says he often tries to seek out a sort of serenity and religious sense of wonder (as in Purgatory Pieces, Nocturnes, Aria, Other Spaces), Above all he feels music should exude a sense of spirit.

The composers Beville especially admires (however stylistically divergent from his own music) include Elliott Carter and Arvo Part. Beville's compositions range from solo and chamber pieces (The Echoing Sky, Michelangelo Pieces, Fashionism-Scenes of Youth, Monodrama) to orchestral works (Epicycle, Grand Partita).

List of Works (Selected)

BALLADE FOR EIGHT PLAYERS (1997)

(fl, ob , bn, hn, perc, vl, vla, vc)​                                        - 7 mins                        audio

EPICYCLE

for chamber orchestra (1999/rev. 2004)                                          - 10 mins                                   audio

 

MEDITATIONS AT THE CROSS

for large ensemble (2000)

(pc, fl, cl, t tb, b tb, 2 perc, hp, pn, vl 1, vl 2, vla, vc, vcb)              - 25 mins

 

THE ECHOING SKY

for piano and electronics (2001)                                    - 10 mins                                     audio

MICHELANGELO PIECES

for piano, electronics and CD (2002)                                              - 14 mins                                     audio

FASHIONISM - SCENES FROM YOUTH

for electric guitar, piano, percussion and electronics (2003)     - 15 mins                                      

PURGATORY PIECES

for string quartet (2004)                                                                    - 18-20 mins                               audio

NOCTURNES

for violin and piano (2005)                                                                - 11 mins                                     audio

SCENES FROM DREAMS

Five pieces for solo piano (2006)                                                     - 12 mins

GRAND PARTITA

​for speaker and orchestra (2007-8)

(texts; Hans-Georg Gadamer)                                                          - 20 mins

 

IMPROVISATION No. 1 'The Time of Day'

for piano and cello (2009)                                                                  - 10 mins                                    audio

 

THE BALLAD OF OSCAR WILDE

improvisation for piano and cello (2009)                                      - 10 mins                                    

 

 

SHARDS AND SHIMMERS

cycle for solo piano (2009-10)                                                          - 25 mins +

 

 

​ARIA​​

for flute and piano (2010)                                                                  - 10 mins

 

FOUR SACRED PIECES

for various instruments (2011)                                                        - 14 mins

​MONODRAMA

for solo violin (2011)                                                                           - 11 mins

PRELUDE-ETUDE-FANTASIE

for keyboard (2012)                                                                           - 10 mins

OTHER SPACES

for viola and bongos (2012)                                                               - 8 mins

 

HOOTENANNY

for flute and electronics (2013)                                                         - 9 mins

 

HOMAGE A MONDRIAN

for piano (2014)                                                                                  - 5 mins

JERUSALEM VISIONS

for chorus and orchestra (2016)

(text: William Blake)                                                                           - 8 mins

 

TRIPTYCH

Three Pieces for Church Organ (2017)                                           - 20 mins

 

TWO PAINTERS  (MONDRIAN AND NICHOLSON)

for piano solo (2018)                                                                         - 9 mins

 

ANTHEM for male voice chorus (2018)

(text: T. S Eliot)                                                                                   - 3'40 mins

OUR WONTED HYMN (2019) 

for chorus and organ                                                                        - 4'40 mins

(text/trans: Robert Bridges)