The Cuillin


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This piece was composed using as it’s basis the compositional technique of serialism in which a fixed series of notes are used to make the harmonic and melodic base of a piece. I looked at the twelve Munro’s on the Isle of Skye known as The Cuillin, and used their height’s to get the twelve notes required in serialism. The tallest is Sgùrr Alasdair at 992 meters and Sgùrr a’ Mhadaidh is the shortest at 918 meters. I added together the number of meters to get a single number that could be related to a note in the scale. I wrote down the scale I had chosen and assigned each Cuillin a note, the heights of the Cuillin gave me the order, which gave me the tune I use. I decided not to use a conventional scale so I put on my B and F levers, which gives the scale a darker colour that I feel matches the mystery of the Cuillin. Although the technique used to achieve the scale is serial, the piece itself cannot be described as a serial piece and I have allowed the music to develop more freely and organically than a system would allow.

Elinor Evans

Edinburgh, July 2019

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