Malcolm Archer: At the Round Earth’s Imagined Corners

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Malcolm Archer’s At the Round Earth’s Imagined Corners, featuring Convivium Singers.

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About this release

The Royal School of Church Music presents, in Association with Convivium Records, an exclusive Malcolm Archer recording At the Round Earth’s Imagined Corners. This is the first single composer disc of Malcolm’s music to be released in a decade, and includes many recently commissioned works.

Composer’s Notes

I started to compose at the age of 11, and this has been an important musical force in my life ever since. Since I have spent most of my life working with choirs, the main part of my output has been choral music, however, I have also written music for the theatre, including three musicals, as well as choral and orchestral music and other instrumental works.

My composition teachers were Humbert Sumsion at the Royal College of Music and Alan Ridout at Cambridge. Both taught me the importance of musical economy and never using more notes than are necessary to convey a desired musical effect. My style is essentially lyrical and approachable, but with a distinctly individual harmonic character, and some of the greatest in influences on my music have been the English composers Vaughan Williams, Finzi and Howells, with a leaning at times toward the French composers Ravel and Debussy.

My love of poetry was inspired by my mother, who taught speech and drama, and from an early age I was acting in plays and going in for speech and drama classes in the Lytham St. Annes Music Festival, as well as many other classes in piano and violin. Those early years taught me to love words, and this has certainly shaped both my compositions and also my approach to choir training, where the importance of expressive diction and conveying the mood of the words is my constant creed. Read more