April – May 2013 For: Naomi Albans and Anthony Ryder
‘Pride and Prejudice’ for flute, clarinet, bassoon, violin and piano
‘The Lord is My Shepherd’ for soprano, alto and piano
‘Amazing, happy, something…’ for violin and piano
‘Aslan’s Theme’ for flute, clarinet, bassoon, violin and piano
My sister asked me to take charge of the music at the church for her wedding, from playing the piano as guests took their seats (a few Gershwin numbers) to arranging all the other music for myself and an assortment of musical guests and composing a medley of chosen tunes to play during the signing of the register. I thought about it… and said yes!
The group of musicians recruited for the occasion consisted of me on piano, my now wife on violin, a cousin on clarinet, and two friends on flute and bassoon. This nicely balanced little quintet had the job of playing the three hymns (arranged with a few minor embellishments between verses) as well as ‘Aslan’s Theme’ from the BBC adaptation of the Chronicles of Narnia for the early 1990s to kick off and ‘Pride and Prejudice’, again from the BBC adaptation, at the end.
‘Aslan’s Theme’ by Geoffrey Burgon was relatively easy to arrange (although Clare didn’t thank me for the double stopping!) but ‘Pride and Prejudice’ by Carl Davis was a little harder to arrange for the quintet and involved transcribing some of the fantastic piano lines from the recording that didn’t appear on the basic sheet music I had. I was also tasked with adding an alto line into Howard Goodall’s ‘The Lord is My Shepherd’ from the Vicar of Dibley for two friends to sing and then composing a medley for me and Clare to play. Knowing I didn’t have to post the parts for this medley off to anybody in advance meant that I was tinkering with it up to the last minute but Clare did marvellously and all was well received. After a solo violin rendition of ‘Amazing Grace’ this melody continues as the piano plays ‘Oh Happy Day’ – one of several juxtapositions in the piece that is a hallmark of my favourite type of medley (see also ‘A Little Piece of Christmas’).