Duration: c. 7 mins.
First performance: Bristol Ensemble (cond. John Pickard). 20th September 2015, St. George’s, Bristol.
Full Score: £11.50
Starting with its earliest inhabitants scratching at the dirt and rocks in an area we now call Shirehampton and finishing with the vibrant, thriving city we know today, Building The City squeezes Bristol’s 60,000 year history into 6 minutes of music.
Of course, there’s little scope for narrative detail within this timescale, but I have tried to illustrate the creation and growth of something from nothing, and to describe the journey of a community going through immense suffering along the way (be it the decimation of the plague in the 14th century or more recent travails such as the Luftwaffe raids of World War II) but repeatedly overcoming hardship to rebuild and to flourish.