Roger Marsh Composer

The Big Bang – Old Testament Tales of love and intrigue

Requiring a huge cast of chorus, soloists and orchestra, the Big Bang is in two parts lasting about one hour each. I was still at Keele when I assembled Part One, and through Giles Easterbrook at Novellos received an invitation to perform it at the 1988 Festival of English Church Music in Norwich.  This was an ironic venue for the premiere, since the piece challenges many of the deep-held beliefs of the Christian faith; primarily that David was a good and honourable man. The festival knew that my position was critical, but welcomed the challenge it presented. The cast I assembled included a few of my Keele ex-students, together with newly discovered musicians and singers at York, although my work at York had not yet formally begun. For primary roles requiring professional performers I managed to secure the services of the amazing Lore Lixenberg, just starting out on her career, who gave an excellent performance of The Song of Abigail and Matilda. David’s psalms were sung by can’t remember, and Alan Belk (Vocem, but also a former MA student at Keele) sung the vital role of ‘narrator’ and was wonderful. 

During the following year I completed Part Two and we mounted the full piece as the 1989 Practical Project in the Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall, York.  A full account of that can be found here.