Our favourite piece written for the group so far has to be Edward Longstaff’s "Saraswati". Based on the Indian Goddess Saraswati (who has four arms) it is one of the most exciting pieces we have ever played. It is technically incredibly demanding and by the end of it we all feel like we have had a good workout, but musically it is also extremely beautiful and dynamic and really conjures up the colours and sounds of an Indian landscape. We recorded this piece on our last CD, Fireworks and Fables, with Tabla player Sanju Sahai. The addition of authentic Indian drums made it even more inspiring to play and listen to.
Interview with 4 Girls 4 Harps by Tobias Fischer
Edward Longstaff’s (b.1965) Aegeus is [a] meditative elegy; it describes the legendary king looking out in vain over the sea for the return of his son Theseus (as outlined in the superb programme notes). The composer utilises the full range of the instrument with a purposeful inclusion of multiphonics.
GRAHAM SALTER BDRS Review of English Oboe:Rediscovered
September 4, 2013
That Short Thing lasts 5 minutes but is no 5-minute-wonder; it is a gem full of striking ideas. .... [A] delicious piece of light music, brilliantly inventive, colourfully and lucidly scored, witty and engaging, very English in most respects save for some delightfully syncopated chinoiserie, .... demands an immediate revival by the KSO and being taken up by other orchestras as a distinctive and enjoyable concert opener.
Edward Longstaff’s Aegeus has great strength of purpose and a compelling sense of atmosphere. This is powerful music which avoids the temptation to indulge in extended playing techniques and achieves a feeling of timelessness as a result.
DAVID JENNINGS Music Web International Review of English Oboe: Rediscovered
August 1, 2013
Edward Longstaff | Composer