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Spirit of the Dance - 3 Movement Suite

Wind Band




Total Duration



Contest & Festival


In Spirit of the Dance I attempt to capture some of the elements of this most fundamental of human activities, the urge to move our bodies to the rhythm of the music.

(I) Stomping Dance



The suite starts with perhaps the most basic dance feeling – the desire to stomp our feet to the music – unrefined, no knowledge of steps needed. The heavy stomp is not always present in the music here, and sometimes you can sense the dancers trying something a little more refined, but it is always lurking in the background, ready to draw us back to the elemental rhythm of the beat.

(II) Waltz Interlude



Of course, dance does not always have to have heat, it can be elegant and restrained, emphasising fluidity of line and movement. In the waltz it is occasionally suspended by the held poses before the motion starts again. Unlike the outer movements, the Waltz Interlude is cool, danced in moonlight rather than under the sun. The two dancers sometimes move as one and at other times the man provides a frame for the more intricate arabesques of his partner.

(III) Duende



During my time living in Spain I went to watch some flamenco dancing. I was expecting the normal tourist clichés but the dancers were serious students of Flamenco ‘Nuevo y Viejo’ (new and old). They performed with passion to some pounding asymmetric rhythms and their performance was the inspiration for Duende. ‘Duende’ as a term is hard to define. It is a spirit of performance – that moment when you are right in the middle of the creative spirit of the music. It is about soul and a heightened state of emotion.

Federico Garcia Lorca wrote: "I have heard an old maestro of the guitar say, 'The duende is not in the throat; the duende climbs up inside you, from the soles of the feet.' Meaning this: it is not a question of ability, but of true, living style, of blood, of the most ancient culture, of spontaneous creation."

Published by Studio Music Company

Spirit of the Dance

Recorded on Spirit of the Dance, Polyphonic QPRM 157D


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