"... in her Variations on a Theme of Benjamin Britten, Beamish sometimes incorporated layer upon layer of strings with a single solo player to each line to create a complex tissue of sound..."
"... going beyond homage, she stamped her personality with beguiling intricacies of texture and virtuosity, as well as yearning in the Elegy and Requiem."
Sally Beamish Premiere Echoes Spirit of Britten, Seen and Heard International, 10 May 2013
The World Première of Beamish's 'Variations on a Theme of Benjamin Britten' was performed by the Academy of St Martin in the Fields on 9 May 2013 at Turner Sims, Southampton.
Here are some extracts from Nick Barnard's review for Seen and Heard International. For the review in full, please click on 'Details' below.
"The Turner Sims concert hall on the campus of Southampton University pulled off something of a coup by hosting the world première of Sally Beamish's Variations on a Theme of Benjamin Britten. The concert was the first of five performances by the ever-excellent Academy of St Martin in the Fields; there are three more over the next three days culminating, after a gap of 11 days, with the London première on May 23 at the Cadogan Hall.
"Beamish's new work is instantly appealing, attractive and I would say bound to enter the repertoire of similar groups looking to expand their repertoire. The attentive audience in the hall gave the work and the composer a warm and appreciative reception. I am sure that this is a work that will be performed and enjoyed by players and audiences like for many years.
"... one of the more imaginatively constructed programmes to celebrate Britten's anniversary. Beamish might have felt his spirit watching over her shoulder – but he was smiling I am sure. A concert to catch..."
Variations on a Theme of Benjamin Britten, Daily Telegraph, 9th May 2013
Ivan Hewett of the Daily Telegraph talks to Sally about giving up the viola, bumping into Peter Pears and her new work, Variations on a Theme of Benjamin Britten.
The Intoxicating Rose Garden
Guardian and Sunday Herald journalist Kate Molleson talked to Sally Beamish about her latest premiere, The Intoxicating Rose Garden.
Sally Beamish Masterclass Article (Financial Times 9th August 2012)
Composer Sally Beamish talked to Financial Times journalist Alexander Gilmour
Tim Ashley's Guardian Review of 'Dance Variations' March 2012 Glasgow
Colin Currie gives the Scottish premiere of Sally Beamish's second percussion concerto, Dance Variations.
'Spinal Chords' Five Star Review 5/2/2012 QEH. by Ivan Hewett. Daily Telegraph
Review of Sally Beamish's ground-breaking work,'Spinal Chords', to a text by The Times award-wining columnist, Melanie Reid. This performance was given at the QEH by the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, narrator Juliet Stevenson.
Review of Debussy Cello/Orchestra Suite. BBC SSO with Steven Isserlis. Feb 2012
Steven Isserlis gives the Scottish premiere of the 'lost' Debussy Suite for Cello and Orchestra, arranged by Sally Beamish
Reviews of 'Seavaigers' Concerto for Scottish Harp and Fiddle Jan 2012
Reviews for Sally Beamish's new concerto for Scottish Clarsach and Fiddle given in Glasgow at the Celtic Connections Festival January 2012.
The Elias Quartett. Review of Sally Beamish: 'Reed Stanzas' 11/11/2012
Sally Beamish's oustanding third string quartet, 'Reed Stanzas' performed by the Elias Quartet in MIlngavie, is reviewed by Ken Walton of The Scotsman.
Sally talks about 'Reed Stanzas', the 2011 Proms BBC Commission to be performed by the Elias Qt at Milngavie Music Club on 11th November...
Sally's commission 'DIVAN' for the group Fretwork, has been nominated for a British Composer Award in the vocal category. The final selection takes place at Stationer's Hall in London on the 30th November 2010.
The Song Gatherer Premiere. Interview with Sir Mark Elder
The Journal of the American Viola Society (JAVS) Spring 2009
Sally Beamish´s Viola concertos
by Sally Beamish
I have been fascinated with the concerto form since my first violin teacher, my mother, put a Vivaldi concerto in front of me to try and revive my waning interest at the age of nine. I had been playing the piano since age five, and it was strongly inked to composing. the violin was more of a struggle and didn´t come naturally. But when Mum told me what a concerto was, I was hooked. It was something about the drama of it: the soloist, like an actor or a storyteller, standing in front of the orchestra, relating to orchestra, conductor, and audience as protagonist and central character...
Incorporated Society of Musicians Music Journal February 2009
This month´s Music Journal has been lucky enough to secure an exclusive interview with the Scottish-based composer, Sally Beamish. Many of you will know her work which embraces chamber, vocal, choral and orchestral music, and is performed and broadcast internationally. She has received commissions from the USA, japan, Australia, Scandinavia and Europe. In this article, she speaks to Deborah Annetts about her work and influences.