Christopher Best

composer ~ educator ~ performer ~ writer


Scending (2015-2016)


Transcending performance at the Barbara Hepworth Museum, St. Ives.
photo Christopher Best

The composer being called to account after the premiere of Scending: The Exchange, Penzance.
photo courtesy Maryam Best

Will Sleath (l), the composer (c) and Miloš Milivojevic (r) during the recording session, Falmouth University
photo taken by recording engineer Kieran Clark

LISTEN: Scending I; A-Scending

LISTEN: Scending II; DE-Scending


LISTEN: Scending III; A-Scending, DE-Scending


LISTEN: Scending IV; TRAN-Scending


LISTEN: Scending (complete)


Fullscore: FREE Download
Flute part: FREE Download
Accordion part: FREE Download

In January 2015 I received the tragic news of the death of my former Dartington colleague Bob Gilmore. I had just received a commission from flautist Will Sleath to compose a new work for himself and the young Serbian accordionist Miloš Milivojevic, and I knew at once that this work would become a homage to Bob, drawing inspiration from a number of musical areas that he had helped me to appreciate.

Initially, this became a piece in an extended single sweep lasting about 14 minutes. Titled 'Transcending', it was premiered at the Exchange, Penzance on June 20th 2015 and repeated shortly after at the Barabara Hepworth Museum, St. Ives. However, I had a number of alternative starting points still in my sketchbook and I came to realise that I had actually initiated a much larger scale work in four movements.

The completed work, now called 'Scending' - with the three new movements preceding the one already performed - was premiered on Friday 28th April 2017 and recorded during the course of the following weekend. The recording was engineered by Kieran Clark and edited, mixed and mastered by myself.

The commissioning of Scending was made possible thanks to the generosity of the Britten-Pears foundation, to whom I am very grateful.