A Thing of Beauty

2016 – for full orchestra – 5:30 (single movement)

Inspired by the following poem excerpt:

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its lovliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; – John Keats

Sheet Music

Score (pdf)
[please contact me for the complete parts]

  1. A Thing of Beauty (midi demo) 05:27


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World Premiere: May 7, 2016, Milton, Canada
Milton Philharmonic Orchestra (conducted by Sabatino Vacca)

Programme Notes

This work was commissioned by the Milton Philharmonic Orchestra. When they requested that I compose a short piece to be included as part of their “A Night at the Proms” concert, my immediate concern was how am I going to compose something that would compliment the patriotic and the overtly romantic/expressive British repertoire so synonymous with the famed “Last Night of the Proms” concerts? After all, I don’t have an ounce of British ethnicity in me. And, while I like to think of my musical voice as being accessible to a wider listening public, I am still a modern-day composer who likes to put a unique personal stamp on all my compositions. Furthermore, my political leanings don’t exactly lend themselves well to composing a blatantly patriotic piece of music.

After further research, I found that the annual “Last Night of the Proms” concert usually also feature repertoire that touches the soul and the heart. And so I explored the simple yet profound feeling of love. I took inspiration from the first phrases of the Keats poem (above) and the piece just literally wrote itself! Nothing evokes beauty, loveliness and enduring passion better than the sound of an orchestra. So many beautiful sonorities. Contemporary composers too often only explore serious themes in their music. Well, I say we need more love, not only in my musical world but throughout the world as well.

– Frank Horvat

Performing Forces: Full Orchestra – Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet, Bassoon, Trumpet in C, Trombone, French Horn, Timpani, Violin 1, Violin 2, Viola, Cello, Contrabass. Woodwind and brass parts can be doubled. Only one timpanist. Standard string orchestra is also acceptable.


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