Sir Peter Maxwell Davies

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Farewell to Stromness

Interlude from The Yellow Cake Revue for solo piano

audio sample: Farewell to Stromness
opus number: 89 no. 1
completion date: 1980
duration: 5 minutes
scoring: Solo piano
world premiere: 21 June 1980, Stromness Hotel, Stromness, Orkney (at the St. Magnus Festival)
Sir Peter Maxwell Davies conductor
publisher: Boosey & Hawkes
category: Instrumental work
difficulty level: 1 (easiest)
programme note: Short Note by Paul Griffiths

Originally one of the interludes from The Yellow Cake Revue, this is a charming example of Davies in Scottish mood, and one suited to pianists of moderate ability.

Short Note II

Farewell to Stromness and Yesnaby Ground are piano interludes from The Yellow Cake Revue, a sequence of cabaret-style numbers first performed at the St. Magnus Festival, Orkney, by Eleanor Bron, with the composer at the piano, in June 1980.
composer’s note: The Yellow Cake Revue takes it name from the popular term for refined uranium ore, and concerns the threat of the proposed uranium mining to the economy and ecology of the Orkney Islands which islanders are determined to fight, down to the last person.

Stromness, the second largest town in Orkney (pop. 1500), would be two miles from the uranium mine's core, and the centre most threatened by pollution. Yesnaby is the nearby clifftop beauty spot under whose soil the uranium is known to lie.
recording: Peter Maxwell Davies piano
Unicorn Kanchana DKP (CD)9070

Peter Maxwell Davies piano
Collins Classics 14442

David Holzman piano
Centaur CRC 2102

Seta Tanyel piano
Collins Classics 30032
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