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Applicants for admission (2023)

c. 5'30"

S.S.A.A.T.T.B.B.

Commissioned by Royal Holloway Chapel Choir for Picture Gallery composer-in-residence 2022-23


Programme Note:

Written during my time as composer-in-residence for the Royal Holloway Picture Gallery, I collaborated with poet Genevieve Stevens and after six months of work, created Applicants for Admission for vocal octet. The piece conveys the doleful imagery portrayed by Luke Filde's brush strokes and gives a voice to those found in the painting by highlighting the struggles that many faced in the Victorian era.


This piece gives a voice to those found in the painting and addresses the struggles that they are facing. It opens with a cold, dark landscape with no sense of hope in sight. As the piece progresses, their voices grow and grow, gradually becoming louder and restless, until they finally find the strength to unite and spur each other on. However, the unity and hope that they share is ultimately futile, and the piece tragically shifts back into the dark landscape that it began with.


Premiere performance:


Rupert Gough and Royal Holloway Chapel Choir at Picture Gallery, Royal Holloway, University of London (February 28, 2023)




For all score and recording enquiries, please contact Matthew Elderton-Lewis via the CONTACT page.

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