'A Christmas Garland' is for upper voices and was premiered by the Surrey & Somerset Chorale, directed by Sarah Poole, in Upper Hale (Farnham, Surrey) on Sunday 4 December 2016. Sung to 'Ah' or hummed, the music uses simple repetitions to create a wash of sound, with the note A ever-present and passed from voice to voice. Performed at the same dynamic level throughout, the music should have a calm and meditative feel and singers should stagger their breathing so there is a continuous wall of sound and with so silences. The music eventually reduces, little by little, to a unified A which should die away to nothingness.
'A Christmas Garland' was arranged for double bass trio by the composer and renamed 'Invocation'. It has been played in Britain, Spain and America many times.
David Heyes studied double bass with Laurence Gray and Bronwen Naish and later at the Royal College of Music in London. He completed his post-graduate studies in Prague with Frantisek Posta (Principal Double Bass, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra). He has given recitals and masterclasses in 13 countries over the past few years and has been a juror at a number of international competitions, twice as chairman.
David has been Specialist Double Bass Tutor at Wells Cathedral School for 19 years and received a prestigious award from the David Walter Charitable Trust of New York for his pioneering activities as a soloist, teacher, publisher and commissioner of new music for double bass. He works with composers throughout the world and is particularly interested to expand the double bass repertoire, by commissioning new works and by rediscovering forgotten ones. Over the past 30 years he has commissioned more than 500 works, from beginner to virtuoso, and from one to twenty basses.
David has transcribed more than 200 works for double bass, many published by Recital Music, and in recent year has also composed a number of original works for double bass which have been performed in Britain, America, Venezuela, Turkey, Spain, Mexico, Germany and Czech Republic. David is self-taught as a composer and his music has been described as lyrical, evocative and accessible, but certainly of the 21st-century.