‘Fish and chips, fish and chips and some lemonade, we’ll have some mushy peas now’… Gaynor gave us this phrase to help us get a tricky rhythm right. It worked, and I had the words and accompanying tune stuck in my head on loop for weeks. This piece has really grown on me as it’s grown in itself. And not just because it has some magnificent lower brass parts (I play the trombone). I hadn’t really thought about how much work goes into getting the notes on the page before we even start playing them, and it was great to be involved in the process.
I found it easy to relate to the inspiration for the piece, as I enjoy cycling about Edinburgh, but probably in a more boring, rules-respecting way than Gaynor had in mind. However, my kids are mad about the crazy bike stunts performed by the likes of Danny MacAskill, so it wasn’t too much of a stretch to get into the spirit of the piece.
There was a real buzz and excitement around the first performance of the piece and the BBC recording a couple of days later. January seems a long way off to have to wait to hear the recording, and find out if they chose the version where I played best (not to mention all seventy-something other players in the band of course!).
All in all, it was a great experience, and I really hope we get the chance to play the piece again soon. Thanks to Gaynor, Sarah, Judy and everyone who put so much work into making it happen!
Now where’s the chip shop, all that cycling has made me hungry…