GUITAR CONCERTO The Travels of Turlough O’Carolan
Composed for Sam Brown
”Turlough O’Carolan (1670-1738) was the son of a blacksmith who lived in County Meath, Ireland. He caught smallpox in 1688 which left him blind. His father’s employer taught him to play the harp and subsequently provided him with a horse and a travelling companion so that he could travel and perform. He went on to write many beautiful melodies.
In this piece, I have made arrangements of some of these melodies and composed “musical episodes” evoking wind, sea, rivers, mountains, night, and scattered these among the Carolan arrangements. I hope to give a sense of his lifestyle of constant travel.”
- Barry Mills