Breakfast Baroque

for flute, bass clarinet, marimba, violin and cello

Oliver Iredale Searle

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for flute, bass clarinet, marimba, violin and cello

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Composer Oliver Iredale Searle
Year of Composition 2007
Duration ca.10'
Instrumentation Flute, Bass Clarinet, Marimba, Violoncello, Violin
Categories (all composers) ,
Catalogue ID ce-os1bb1


The title of this piece is a tag line from Classic FM, describing an early morning show that existed when the station first went on air. Although Classic FM was responsible for sparking my interest in classical music in the early 90s, while listening around Christmas time one year, I was bombarded by the same recording of Zadok the Priest three times in the space of a few hours.

I love Handel’s most well-known coronation anthem (performed at every coronation since 1727), but have used it to display my contempt for the fickle way in which music is often treated, contrasted with my nostalgia for the enjoyment I experienced on hearing certain pieces of music for the first time. I have asked the flute player to use quite specific tunings throughout this work, including the use of a baroque instrument (pitched slightly lower, at A = 415Hz) for a short section.

On hearing this piece for the first time, my composer-friend Gareth Williams described it as: ‘what might have happened had Gavin Bryars attempted to write Zadok the Priest’.