Photograph © Paddy Ryan (white-necked raven above Mt Kilimanjaro)
In 2014 Bill walked up Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania. While sitting beside his tent below the summit he watched three pairs of white-necked ravens duelling mid-flight. This included them flying in mirror formation – one upside down under the other – parting, then soaring directly towards each other before clasping talons mid-air. This aerial display in the oxygen-poor air at c. 5800 m left a lasting impression and inspired the poem, Thin Air Living. He set this for SATB choir, solo soprano and solo piano for a commission from King’s School, Worcester.
More Pieces from Places
Finzi Scholarship piece inspired by Mountain Hares in the Cairngorms. Full orchestra version (2,2,2,2; 4,2,0,0; timp; strings) and chamber version (violin, cello, piano, clarinet). Bill also wrote a travel account.
Written to raise the profile of the Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for ‘The Singing Glacier’. For violin, viola and glockenspiel.
A collaborative response to glaciers. In 2016 Bill went to East Greenland with poet Helen Mort for a climbing expedition. They were joined by film-maker Richard Jones.