Welcome to MYRA MUSIC The official site of Nigel Hess
'Silent Nights' re-released by Deutsche Grammophon for Christmas 2013
Nigel's hugely successful Christmas album, Silent Nights, originally commissioned and released by Classic FM, was reissued by Deutsche Grammophon on October 4th as part of their brand new 'Panorama' crossover label. Nigel has recorded three extra tracks for the new international release which is set for a major promotional push in the run-up to the holiday season.
New York Philharmonic plays 'A Christmas Overture'
Since John Rutter commissioned A Christmas Overture from Nigel in 2008 it has become popular with orchestras worldwide, and for their 2013 holiday season the New York Philharmonic will be giving two performances at Lincoln Center on December 20th and 21st. In the UK it will be performed by, amongst many others, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.
'The Knight of the Burning Pestle' at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
Nigel is delighted to be scoring 'The Knight of the Burning Pestle' for the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse at Shakespeare's Globe in February 2014. Directed by Adele Thomas, this will be the second production of the new theatre's first season.
'Admission: One Shilling' in London, Chicago and Australia
Admission: One Shilling was first performed by legendary actress Patricia Routledge and international concert pianist Piers Lane in 2009 as part of the annual Dame Myra Hess Day at London’s National Gallery. The production tells the extraordinary story of how concert pianist Myra Hess founded and organized a six-year series of morale-boosting, spirit-lifting lunchtime concerts at the National Gallery throughout the darkest days of the Second World War.
Devised by Nigel Hess (Myra's great-nephew), the story, related in Dame Myra’s own words, tells how the “great adventure” of those 1600 concerts began and how they continued while the Luftwaffe’s bombs rained down on London.
Admission: One Shilling has now been performed around the UK and Europe over 40 times since its National Gallery premiere, and January 2013 saw its first USA performance in Chicago with Lesley Nicol (Downton Abbey's Mrs Patmore) and Inna Faliks sharing the performing honours. Nigel was in Chicago to direct the piece. An Australian tour in 2014 has now been confirmed.
The most recent London performance of Admission: One Shilling was at the Wigmore Hall on June 14th where it played to a sell-out house. Further performances in the UK and Belgium are scheduled for later this year.
Nigel's latest CD New London Pictures, released on April 29th, was Classic FM's 'CD of the Week'. Nigel's music for Symphonic Wind Orchestra is performed by bands worldwide, and this new CD features 12 tracks performed by the Central Band of the RAF, one of the premier military bands in the UK today, conducted by the composer. Works include New London Pictures, Ladies in Lavender, The Lochnagar Suite, Monck's March, Shakespeare Pictures and A Christmas Overture. For more details about this exciting release including how to order the CD, download tracks, listen to excerpts and watch a video of the recording, please visit the album's webpage (link below).
"Thank God the days are gone when we have to apologise when a contemporary composer is writing a tune. Nigel Hess writes good tunes, and this is a terrific CD. Please don't hesitate." (David Mellor, Classic FM)
"It's a cracking album!" (Alan Titchmarsh, Classic FM)
March Barnes Wallis was given its broadcast premiere on Radio 2's Friday Night is Music Night on June 17th, and has featured as part of the Central Band's 2013 tour around the UK. The piece has been recorded as part of the tour's accompanying CD, and can be purchased at the link below.
Members of the National Youth Ballet of Great Britain performed excerpts from The Old Man of Lochnagar to a specially commissioned score by Nigel Hess at the Coronation Festival which took place at Buckingham Palace July 11th to 14th. More details below.
The 2013 Classic FM Hall of Fame & Music Movie Chart + webchat
Never out of Classic FM's Hall of Fame since their respective releases, 2013's chart sees Ladies in Lavender rising 17 places from last year's position to number 96, while the Piano Concerto comes in at number 246. Ladies in Lavender also clocks in at number 15 in CFM's 2013 Movie Music Chart.
"Nigel Hess' main theme for this 2004 film starring Maggie Smith and Judi Dench is simple and beautiful. Performed by award-winning violinist Joshua Bell and the Royal Philharmonia Orchestra, it is one of the most enduring film scores of recent years." (Classic FM)
"As modern piano concertos go, Nigel Hess' has to be one of the most revered. Originally commissioned by the Prince of Wales as a tribute to the memory of the Queen Mother, it has since been recorded by the likes of Lang Lang — testament to its status as a performers' concerto." (Classic FM)
A major new stage musical with a score by Nigel Hess has been in development for two years, and, after a workshop at the end of last year with the fabulous students at the Arts Educational School in London followed by a professional workshop this autumn, plans are advancing for a 2014 production. Watch this space!!