Programme Note

Welcome, originally a short four-minute work for boy’s voices, organ, brass and percussion, was commissioned specially for the Royal Opening of the Bridgewater Hall, Manchester, in 1996, in the presence of HM The Queen.

The text is rather simple – it consists of the word ‘Welcome’ repeated many times in a variety of languages, from various European, to Hebrew and Arabic – a fitting way of welcoming a new audience  to a new hall, and to signal a bright future for an international concert venue in a great city.

Although the work opens serenely, with flowing upward arpeggios on the organ, it soon becomes more joyful and exuberant, with pounding accented rhythms accompanying the swaying voices. The opening music eventually returns, but swiftly moves to a joyful and celebratory climax.

In 2006 the composer made a new version for upper voices and piano, specially for the Kinder Children’s Choir of the High Peak and their Director Joyce Ellis, who performed it at a concert in the Buxton Opera House in 2006

This version was published by Novello in 2015.


Written: 1996

upper voices and piano

Genre: Vocal & Choral

Publisher: Novello

Duration: 4'

First Performance: 4 December, 1996
Bridgewater Hall, Manchester, UK
Manchester Boy's Choir, Wayne Marshall (organ), Royal Northern College of Music Ensemble, Adrian Jessett (conductor)