COMMISSIONS, PROJECTS & PROGRAMMING

"Inspired Goodwin creates magical moments."

La Pais, Spain

Paul Goodwin has always held a keen interest in contemporary classical music, jazz and folk music, ever since studying modern oboe techniques with Heinz Holliger and composition at Nottingham University. Since this time he has had the pleasure of collaborating with many of today’s foremost composers and commissioning a number of works, including :

Commissions 

Colin Matthews - Oboe quartet no.1

David Bedford - Like a strand of Scarlet

John Woolrich - Arcangelo

Thea Musgrave - Journey into light

Thea Musgrave - Largo: in homage to B.A.C.H.

Curt Cacciopo - A Meeting of Souls

John Corigliano - Fancy on a Bach Air (Strings version)

Caroline Shaw - Oculi Mei

Benjamin Wallfisch - Margrave Interludes

Mark Mancina - Guitar Concerto 

John Tavener - Eternity’s Sunrise

 

John Tavener :

 

Paul’s friendship and collaboration with John Tavener lasted many years, premiering many of his works and becoming one of his favoured conductors and interpreters.

Paul was privileged to conduct many premiers and performances of John’s work and is regularly asked for his insight into the interpretation of this unique composer.

 

He has recorded a number of pieces :

 

Ikon or Eros - Minnesota Orchestra and Choir

Eternity's Sunrise - Academy of Ancient Music 

Sappho Lyrical Fragments - AAM

Funeral Canticle - AAM Choir

Song of the Angel - AAM

Total Eclypse - AAM

Agraphon - AAM

Children of Men film sound track.

Ghormenghast BBC sound track. - Music arranged and orchestrated by Paul Goodwin 

Photo - Oper Leipzig

Projects

Paul likes to be involved in more than just conducting concerts, but also curating, directing and acting in different productions : 

JS Bach staged St.Matthew Passion in collaboration with Jonathan Miller

JS Bach staged St.John Passion directed and conducted by Paul Goodwin

JS Bach St John Passion ballet in collaboration with Mario Schroeder, Opera Leipzig.

Midsummer Night’s dream, music by Mendelssohn, edited Shakespeare text with one or two actors. 

John Tavener’s ballet “Laila” in collaboration with Wayne McGregor.

John Tavener’s music adapted live for the Werner Herzog documentary, Pilgrimage.

Handel’s Water Music, curated with regional artworks of river and sea to create atmospheric rolling images timed with the music as a multi media backdrop to the music. 

 

The Staged Matthew Passion - the first of its kind.

 

I conceived and conducted the award winning production of the St.Matthew Passion that was subsequently produced and developed by Jonathan Miller into a highly successful and influential new way of presenting the Passion. Soloists, chorus and instrumentalists as equal actors in the drama, played out in the round, wearing street clothes. I oversaw and conducted the production on tour in England, France, Germany, Holland, Spain, recording it for the BBC and then presenting it for two seasons at the Brooklyn Academy in New York. 

"The energy is electrifying. This is emphatically not a concert: it’s life and death in the raw."

The Independent, London

Photo - Randy Tunnell

Programming

Innovative and challenging programs are central to Paul’s musical message:

 

I come at programming from two contrasting angles -

 

Firstly, as someone passionate about the sounds and performance practice of early instruments and how to translate that into dynamic modern instrument concerts. 

 

Secondly, as someone who likes to challenge the programming status quo by deconstructing pieces and inserting complimentary modern compositions within the framework of a traditional piece.

To give three examples : 

Vaughan Williams Pastorale Symphony.

Inserting between the final movements of the Vaughan Williams Pastoral Symphony a piece for saxophone and orchestra by Mark-Anthony Turnage, Man Descending. I use the Vaughan Williams themes and vocalise, (which starts the final movement of the symphony), as an integral part of the Saxophone improvisation at the beginning and end of the Turnage. This creates contrast, integration and refreshment. 

Bach Magnificat.

Bach wrote two versions of the Magnificat. I take the Christmas version that includes a number of inserts by Bach for choir and soloists between movements and add in a newly commissioned insert by the american composer Caroline Shaw. This new piece, of great beauty for choir, is with a Shaker text and integrates seamlessly with the Bach. 

 

Bach Suite of Sinfonias.

I put together a suite of orchestral music from JS Bach’s cantatas, using lesser know instrumental sinfonias in a cohesive structure. I then insert short complimentary modern compositions and commissions between the sinfonias. For instance, adding the first movement of Stravinsky’s Dunbarton Oaks alongside a similarly rhythmic Bach sinfonia, or balancing a beautiful Bach Adagio with a haunting commission for strings by John Corigliano. Creating an entertaining, surprising and moving musical organism taking up half a concert.