Stephen Brown & Simply Quartet | Eulogy for Meghan Reid

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Eulogy for Meghan Reid

by Stephen Brown & Simply Quartet

Eulogy for Meghan Reid is a contemporary, free tonal work for string quartet and piano expressing the emotions of grief and loss of a loved one.
Genre: Classical: Chamber Music
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
clip
1. Eulogy for Meghan Reid: I. Adagio e mortale
Stephen Brown & Simply Quartet
7:20 $1.99
clip
2. Eulogy for Meghan Reid: II. Allegro - Lento
Stephen Brown & Simply Quartet
2:45 $0.99
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3. Eulogy for Meghan Reid: III. Andante cantabile
Stephen Brown & Simply Quartet
5:27 $0.99
clip
4. Eulogy for Meghan Reid: IV. Adagio ma non troppo
Stephen Brown & Simply Quartet
7:53 $1.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Eulogy for Meghan Reid ~ Programme Notes

This is the second commission that I have received from Ian and Eleanor Reid. The first was my 17 movement work for piano, Seconda Pratica, which was commissioned by Ian to celebrate the Reid's 50th wedding anniversary.

The Eulogy for Meghan Reid, as the title states, is a eulogy. In this case it is an extended eulogy, for their granddaughter, Meghan Reid, who lost her life in a car accident at the age of 19.

Ian and I met to discuss the content of the work before I began to compose. We discussed Meghan's life and influences. I read through the eulogy Eleanor delivered at the funeral and other associated material. Ian also brought to my attention certain poems of Thomas Hardy that spoke to his heart.

The Eulogy for Meghan Reid is divided into three sections within four movements.

Movement One, Adagio e mortale, is a four voice fugue. Movement Two, Allegro - Lento, switches between unsettled fast sections and lyrical slow sections over a ground bass. Both movements are in D minor and are to be played without a break. They express the initial sadness, loss, and the inability to comprehend the tragic event.

Movement Three, Andante cantabile - Allegetto leggerio - Andante cantabile, is the Eulogy. This movement is in ternary form, A-B-A¹. The A sections are a lyrical song. The melody is sung by the cello with piano accompaniment. The B section, in the violins and the viola, is the lightness of the spirit. 

Movement Four, Adagio ma non troppo, is a five voice double fugue. It is the coming to grips, however much one can, with the situation. This Movement begins similar to Movement One, but in a more positive character in D, the tonic major. It then wrestles with itself throughout the centre sections in the keys of F sharp minor, E minor, A minor, and D minor, finally subsiding into a gentle, quiet coda in D major.
Stephen Brown

1. Adagio e mortale, 7:20
2. Allegro - Lento, 2:45
3. Andante cantabile - Allegetto leggerio - Andante cantabile 5:27
4. Adagio ma non troppo, 7:53
Total time: 23:39

Live recording, conducted by Deqing Wen at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music.

Stephen Brown 904 Dunsmuir Road, Victoria, BC, Canada V9A 5C3
Swan House Victoria SJB 1357ACD © Stephen Brown 2009

The Simply Quartet, violins - Shen Dan Feng, and Sun Tong Tong, viola - Lv Xiang, violoncello - He Si Hao, was founded at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music in September 2008, with guidance from Jensen Lam. In 2009, the Quartet was a regular performer in M’s Crystal Chamber Music series, as well as in the Weekend Chamber Music Series organized by the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra. In September of that year, they were invited to participate in the European Chamber Music Academy session held in Grossraming, Austria. In 2010, the ensemble held many concerts in Beijing, including at the Central Conservatory, National Theatre and Capital M Restaurant, as well as at the Shanghai EXPO. In December 2009, the Simply Quartet won first prize in the Haydn Chamber Music Competition held in Shanghai.

Deqing Wen
Born in a small village in Southern China, Wen studied composition in China, Switzerland and France. He was a visiting scholar at Columbia University in New York City while 2005 to 2006. At present,  he is professor of “analysis and performance of contemporary music”, also the artistic director of New Music Week of Shanghai Conservatory of Music. His music is a mixture of traditional Chinese music and complex western techniques. These are combined with his own creative inspiration. Since 1991 Wen has been living in Geneva. He is a member of the Association Suisse des Musiciens and the Societé Suisse pour les Droits des Auteurs d’Oeuvres Musicales. Over these past few years, he has returned to China several times to take part in musical exchanges between China, Switzerland, USA and France.

Eulogy for Meghan Reid ~ Comments

The premiere performance of Eulogy for Meghan Reid - string orchestra and piano version - was not reviewed by the press. However, immediately after the performance and in emails following I received many heartfelt comments. Below are some of them.

- The eulogy was simply exquisite and clearly felt as such by all who were stunned before responding. Clapping seemed almost to be an insult of exuberance after such a sublime experience.
Lynne Walker

- I know it must have been difficult to compose such a piece of such great sadness, but you have done a brilliant job. It was astonishing! Bravo Steve, you've taken the darkest theme and made a wonderful resurrection of a tragic loss of life.
Kim Hollingsworth - artist and teacher

- I just wanted to say once again what a privilege it was to see you conduct, and to hear the Eulogy for Meghan Reid performed.  It was incredibly moving. I can only imagine that the Reid family is touched and honoured by such a beautiful and powerful piece of music.
Margaret Baker

- We were extremely moved by your eulogy, and felt very fortunate to have been there this evening. It's difficult to find words to express my feelings about the  piece. It was immensely expressive, running the gamut of emotions, while beautifully constructed.
Tony Baker - management consultant

 - Stephen, I just went through your quartet--recording and score. It is hauntingly beautiful. Riveting. From the opening chiming of the piano to the final D major resolution, it grabbed me and wouldn't let go. Gorgeous.
David Clenman - composer, instructor, lecturer

- First of all, thank you for sending me that beautiful recording.  What a wonderful piece!  I'm always a little bit overwhelmed when I get a truly thoughtful reading or performance such as this.  It makes up for all that time spent in computer-land.
Ed Marcus - composer

- You have this extraordinary gift to translate simple notes into a remarkable piece. You allowed yourself to search the soul and created something inherently beautiful. Your performance on Friday evening evoked great emotions and allowed all of us to tap within ourselves in deep and mysterious ways. A remarkable performance. Thank you. Thank you.
Dr. Johanne Brodeur

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