A British Isles Suite selected for National Contest
July 07 2012

Up and coming young composer Jonathan Bates recently joined the Prima Vista portfolio of artists. His new work, A British Isles Suite has been commissioned for this year's National Finals and has been set as the 4th Section test-piece.

Jonathan is a tenor horn player with the world famous Black Dyke Band and is currently studying at Leeds College of Music.  He has taken a keen interest in composition from an early age and has already made an impression within the brass band world with several world premieres to his name in the last 12 months.  He has been given compositional guidance from some of the leading composers of the genre and at only 17, he is probably the youngest composer to have recieved a commission to write for a major brass band competition. Read more about Jonathan on his profile page in our "Artists Portfolio".


A British Isles Suite is a musical exploration of poetry from around the British Isles. Each movement takes inspiration from a quote of literature specific to the country in question. The work is written in a symphonic style with a moderately paced opening movement, a slow and expressive second movement, a lively two-part minuet and a grand finale.

I - Scotland "When chill November's surley blast, make fields and forest bare" - from Man Was Made To Mourn by Robert Burns

II - Wales "Though lovers be lost, love shall not" - from And Death Shall Have No Dominion by Dylan Thomas

III Isle of Man "Make us free as thy sweet mountain air" - from the Isle of Man National Anthem by William Gill

IV Ireland "How do we tell the dancer from the dances?" - from Among School Children by William Butler Yeats

V England "Be not afraid of greatness" - from Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare