|Peter T. Cork||(1926-2012)||teacher, composer, author, walker, friend ...|
A Man of Kent - A Suite for Small Orchestra
This work is dedicated to Michael Foad, who has done so much to promote both versions of the Kentish Suite.
The original version of 'Man of Kent' was written by the composer in the Nineteen Fifties. It was an evocation of the Kentish countryside south of the River Medway, hence its title. (Kentish Men live to the north, Men of Kent to the south.) The three movements comprise Romney Marsh, Alkham Valley, in the Fifties a quiet and remote area, and The White Cliffs. In the year 2001, Peter Cork decided to write a completely new version of the work, keeping its thematic material but otherwise making a fresh structure and orchestration, while still evoking its pastoral scene.
Sounds of the countryside can be heard in each movement, the bleating of sheep on Romney Marsh, the sound of bird song and the tolling of Alkham's church bell and the squawk of seagulls on Dover's cliffs.
The Romney Marsh movement has a modal, folk-song quality and suggests the fascination of a far and lonely distance on a clear marshland day.
Alkham Valley makes use of the folk-ballad, 'The Lark in the Still Air', creating a portrait both gentle and deeply romantic.
After the noisy seagulls, The White Cliffs continues with a lively maritime theme, while its heroic second tune could embody the spirit of Dover citizens in the hell-fire corner days of the Second War.
In 2004, The Royal Ballet Sinfonia conducted by Gavin Sutherland recorded 'A Man of Kent' and it featured as the second item on Peter Cork's 'Through The Looking Glass' compact disc, Campion Cameo 2031.
Cameo 2031 CD booklet penultimate page
Cameo 2031 CD booklet back cover
It is possible to listen to these recordings because Peter Cork financed the recording himself and made payments to the performers in lieu of them receiving royalties. The music available from the links opposite was taken from the 2nd Edit of the actual recording arranged by Philip Lane. The recording was mastered by Richard Scott and dated May 2004.
When the Royal Ballet Sinfonia played 'A Man of Kent' conducted by Gavin Sutherland there were at least three takes of each number. The recordings you can listen to here were NOT taken from the Cameo 2031 compact disc to avoid copyright issues.
To listen to 'Romney Marsh' with Gavin Sutherland conducting the Royal Ballet Sinfonia, click on the play symbol below.
To listen to 'Alkham Valley', click on the play symbol below.
'To listen to 'The White Cliffs', click on the play symbol below.
|editor: Peter J. Cosker||Peter T. Cork||updated: 22/01/2014|