The Cornelius Cardew Concerts Trust

"Climbing to Heights Hitherto Unknown"
The Cornelius Cardew Concerts Trust (CCCT), in partnership with the Music Department of Morley College, is once again issuing its annual call for compositions dedicated to the spirit of the New which Cornelius Cardew embodied. To emphasise the aspiration of humanity for music which embodies that spirit, we are calling on composers to take as their theme "Climbing to Heights Hitherto Unknown". One such piece has already been written, for solo violin, by Hugh Shrapnel (performed to end the 2019 concert).

The instrumental ensemble available is the Piano Quintet. Composers may write for the full quintet, or for any combination of these instruments: solo, duo, trio, quartet. We are very pleased that once again the Venezuelan/Italian concert pianist Luis Parés will be joining the Quartet De Madrugada to make up a very distinguished instrumental ensemble. The new works chosen will be performed at Morley College, London, on Friday, October 2, 2020. The innovation this time is that works (just begun, in progress or completed) will be workshopped on Sunday, March 29, 2020 (this is a change from the date originally published). Hopefully all composers who express interest can be accommodated in the workshop. The aim is not simply to discuss technical issues in writing for the respective combinations of instruments, but also to test out how the content of the theme is reflected in the form of the composition.

At the workshop, we should be able to decide which pieces will be performed at the actual concert. But we think the workshop will be valuable in itself for composers of whatever experience. Then the completed compositions should be submitted to be in the hands of the CCCT no later than 11:59pm on Sunday, May 31, 2020. Score and parts should be made available by the composers, or sent as PDFs to the email of the CCCT.

As we continually say, we encourage composers to acquaint themselves with the path that Cornelius Cardew took in linking his music with the struggle to open the door to progress. The CCCT upholds his legacy of having fidelity to the ensemble of human relations, and being dedicated to the creation of a new world of socialised humanity.

View the event details as a PDF.
Cornelius Cardew was a renowned composer, musician and modern communist.

The Cornelius Cardew Concerts Trust celebrates the path that he was instrumental in opening up in the world of new music. We encourage composers to respond to a call for music that, like the music of Cornelius, is dedicated to the New, a living music that might have a beautiful, militant, human-centred character.

Cornelius Cardew was always a pathfinder, and it is well known that Cornelius, as well as being an outstanding musician and composer, became a leading political figure and communist. He was a champion of enlightenment and progress in the political, social and cultural fields, his life, ideas and music forming an integral whole.

Cornelius' greatest legacy, one might say, is of keeping in step with the requirements of the times in a manner that accepts no dogmatic rendering of reality or limitations on the human spirit and striving to contribute to the creation of a new world of socialised humanity.