Some Dirty Tricks

for soprano and piano

Paul Alan Barker

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for soprano and piano

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Composer Paul Alan Barker
Year of Composition 2000
Duration -
Categories (all composers) ,
Catalogue ID ce-pab1sdt1


‘Dirty Tricks’ (1997) was an opera ‘inspired’ to director Chris Newell by the acrimonious Virgin Atlantic vs British Airways dispute. Stephen Chance wrote a libretto in iambic pentameter throughout, to underline the mock-heroic tone. The only female character in this otherwise testosteronic work played an Air Hostess, in various disguises. The only instrument in the opera was an electric bass guitar, which played interludes in the form of Sonnets – a strict musicalisation of the poetic form. ‘Some Dirty Tricks’ intersperses the three arias of the Air Hostess with two of the instrumental Sonnets, with the electric bass part recomposed for piano.