Exhibition Pieces

Throughout January 2022 I composed a new piece of music each day, as part of Fun A Day Dundee.
My composition inspirer tool randomly combined keys and moods in 24 different ways . . .

The title of each piece was inspired by an item on display at The McManus, Dundee.
The music ended up in various styles, and on several instruments - and it was a lot of fun to do.

On this page there are pieces for brass quartet, flute, cello and guitar.
The complete series of 24 piano pieces are on Dundee Piano.

Brass Quartet

28th December 1879 - A minor

Beautiful railway bridge of the silv'ry Tay
Alas! I am very sorry to say
That ninety lives have been taken away
On the last sabbath day of 1879
Which will be remember'd for a very long time.
William Topaz McGonagall
Grave, 6/8. PDF score | Trumpet | Horn | Trombone | Tuba

Dundee Marmalade - E flat major

According to a Scottish legend, the creation of orange marmalade in Dundee occurred by accident. The legend tells of a ship carrying a cargo of oranges that broke down in the port, resulting in some ingenious locals making marmalade out of the cargo.
Andante, 4/4. PDF score | Trumpet | Horn | Trombone | Tuba

The Ninth Wonder of the World - B flat major

The title is from a poster announcing the 'Grand inaugration and opening of the Tay Bridge' on Friday May 31, 1878, with a celebration of this national event and a programme of entertainments . . . little did anyone know it would fall so soon after.
Up-beat Swing, 4/4. PDF score | Trumpet | Horn | Trombone | Tuba

The Mask - B flat minor

Inspired by a fierce looking mask on display in the crime and punishment section at The McManus!
Largo, 4/4. PDF score | Trumpet | Horn | Trombone | Tuba

Flute and Piano

Sterling Silver - F minor

The title was taken from a tea set on display at The McManus, presented to a local couple on their silver wedding anniversary.
Allegro, 3/4. PDF score | Flute | Piano

Prison Door - G minor

Inspired by an old prison door displayed at The McManus. And also a wee bit by this: 'Two men looked out from prison bars, one saw the mud, the other saw stars.' Dale Carnegie
Dolente, 4/4. PDF score | Flute | Piano

View from Balgay - F major

From the top of Balgay Hill you can see the River Tay, though today's view is a bit different from the painting by Charles Gustav Louis Phillips on display at The McManus.
Adagio, 4/4. PDF score | Flute | Piano

Winkie the Pigeon - F major

Winkie flew 120 miles from a ditched plane home to Broughty Ferry, and was awarded the Dickin Medal for "delivering a message under exceptional difficulties and so contributing to the rescue of an Air Crew while serving with the RAF in February 1942."
Allegretto, 4/4. PDF score | Flute | Piano

Flute and Cello

Standing Stone - B minor

Named after a mysterious standing stone on display at The McManus, with a variety of interesting carvings.
Misterioso, 3/4. PDF score | Flute | Cello

Cello and Piano

The Old Town - C sharp minor

The McManus has a model town showing in great detail how Dundee city centre would have looked in about 1850. The work was commissioned by the museum in the 1930s and carved by Alexander Fair.
Scherzoso, 2/4. PDF score | Cello | Piano

Gloaming - G sharp minor

The gloaming comes; the day is spent; the sun goes out of sight; and painted is the Occident with purple sanguine bright. Alexander Hume, Story of a Summer Day.
Adagio Cantabile, 4/4. PDF score | Cello | Piano

The Mars - C minor

Infamous as Dundee's 'bad boys' ship, the TS Mars was anchored on the River Tay from 1869-1929. During that time, she transformed the lives of over 6,000 homeless and destitute boys from across Scotland.
Andante, 4/4. PDF score | Cello | Piano


Dennis the Menace - G major

First appearing in 1951, Dennis the Menace is the longest-running strip in the Beano comic, published by Dundee's DC Thomson.
Steady Swing, 4/4. PDF

Tangerine / Blue - E minor

Originally written on guitar and inspired by the football memorabilia on display at The McManus. Dens Park (Dundee F.C.) and Tannadice Park (Dundee United F.C.) are the two closest football grounds in the UK.
Vivace, 4/4. PDF

Log Boat - D major

A log boat on display at The McManus, carved from a single log of native oak, was found in the nineteenth century by salmon fishers at Habbiebank, an inner estuary of the Tay. It was dated to the Pictish period, 485 AD.
Steady, 4/4. PDF

Do You Bear? - E major

Inspired by the stuffed bear at The McManus who roars at you!
Rocky, 4/4. PDF