In the Margins of Composition

Frank Denyer

Vision Edition, 2019
Frank Denyer
ISBN: 97809931716166


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„The occupation of an artist rests on the cultivation of an inner world, the boundaries of which remain unknown, but which slowly solidifies until it pushes an inadequate simulacrum of some part of itself into existence. Thus materialised, it can finally be properly confronted as an independent entity. Art is the attempt to build bridges between this secret unknown inner space and the outside world, but the process is not a simple one.“ – Frank Denyer

Frank Denyer’s creative impetus has taken him all over the world, from the UK to Japan, Senegal to the US on a lifetime quest to cultivate an intangible musical territory. This book brings together reflections on the obsessions of a life spent in contemplation and creation, its impulses and influences with a personal review of his works and constitutes an indispensable and concise personal window on a unique artistic journey.

‘Denyer’s work resembles no one else’s. Here acts of regeneration are effected by the very waste thrown out by an industrialised society. Our elegies must become new births if we are to have a future, so Denyer’s green ethnicism is the opposite pole to what Steve Reich called ‘the old exoticism trip.’ There can be no doubt that it matters.’

Prof Wilfrid Mellers (Classic CD)

‘Frank Denyer is an English composer whose imaginatively rich compositions fall between several and into none of the accepted categories of contemporary music. Each of his works present an astonishingly varied array of musical sound sources
– new instruments of his own invention, adapted instruments, instruments of non- Western traditions, rare and virtually extinct instruments, and conventional Western instruments.’

Dr Bob Gilmore (musicologist, biographer, editor of Tempo)

‘His music is so unique and unforgettable. Impossible really to compare to much other music, the path he is taking is so original. From soft shimmering percussive sounds to beautiful and hidden melodies, his music is rich with detail. An important artist, one that I have learned a lot from. His music needs to be heard much more often.’

Ilan Volkov (Principal Guest Conductor BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Tectonics Festival Curator)

‘So much new music is described as unique but Frank’s really does sit well outside the usual tribes and references. It is fragile, yes, and often rather quiet, but moreover it is very human, very humble, very honest and somehow completely timeless.’

Juliet Fraser (soprano, co-founder of Exaudi)

‘Denyer is a prolific and highly original composer. Riverine Delusions, recently played by the Barton Workshop was impressive in its unusualness, daring and beauty.’

Alvin Lucier (composer)