Work Details

14 minutes

Commissioned by Music in the Round for Ensemble 360 with support from Arts Council England/Grants for the Arts and the Foyle Foundation.


Clarinet, bassoon, 2 violins, viola and cello.

Programme Note

Jacaranda was written for the first birthday of my niece. While I was watching her in her cot, I was inspired by the hanging mobile above her, chiming out nursery rhymes to lull her to sleep. Rather than aiming to create music that would be played to her at night, I wanted to use the idea of a mobile as a structure for the work, i.e. branches of rotating material, from which hang other independently rotating branches. The piece has four short movements or sections that segue together, each of which possesses the possibilty of looping eternally. The title Jacaranda is borrowed from a sculpture by Alexander Calder, the American artist credited as the inventor of the hanging mobile.

This work was commissioned as part of a centenary celebration of the birth of Benjamin Britten. To mark this I borrowed a melody from Britten's The Nurse's Song, forming the basis of a lullaby in the first movement. Other composers are also referenced in the music.

Past Performances

10 October 2012
The Crucible Studio, Sheffield
Ensemble 360

3 February 2013
Bridge House Theatre, Warwick
Ensemble 360