Matthew Schellhorn

pianist

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IAN WILSON (b. 1964)
Lim (1998)
for solo piano | 18'30 | UK Premiere 2005; Northern Ireland Premiere 2012
  • SummaryOpen or Close
    Matthew Schellhorn's 2012 appearance in the Walled City Music Festival, Derry, included the Northern Ireland premiere of Ian Wilson's Lim. This delicately virtuosic piece was later revised in a version for piano and string quartet and dedicated to Matthew Schellhorn.
  • Programme noteOpen or Close
    Limena was written in 1998 to a commission from the Irish Chamber Orchestra. I was living in Belgrade at the time of writing - a mostly very happy and peaceful period in my life - and was interested in creating an abstract, flowing piece of music which would explore the gentler qualities of the piano. When writing, I actually composed the complete piano part first and then went back to the beginning to orchestrate it. Since it had been written that way I always felt the piece could work well as a solo in its own right, hence Lim.

    The Omagh bombing atrocity took place as I was writing, and so the central part of the tripartite structure is requiem-like in feel, more darkly insistent and tolling than the rest.
    Although the piece falls into three broad sections, on a small scale the ideas are very fluid, and I was keen to let them inspire each other, let the music write itself, so to speak. The result is that the music has a stream-of-consciousness feel to it, where ideas grow out of each other, and there is rarely anything like a sudden interjection. In Limena, all the strings use metal mutes, so the soloist can play more quietly than he or she would perhaps normally feel able to - I wanted to create an atmosphere where the audience has to really listen to hear all the notes, an atmosphere of quiet intensity. Only at the end does the music actually become loud, and then only so it can subsequently die away, as if continuing to sound beyond our hearing.

    © 2005 Ian Wilson
  • PerformancesOpen or Close
    28 September 2005
    St Olave Jewry, Hart Street, London
    UK Premiere

    22 January 2007
    West Road, Cambridge, UK

    2 August 2012
    Walled City Music Festival; Derry, Northern Ireland
    Northern Ireland Premiere
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