Purple Music (Suffolk) LLP

Shelagh DelaneyWe are excited to announce that composer Stuart Stevens has been given permission by the estate of the late Shelagh Delaney (1938 - 2011) - one of English literature's most important and relevant 20th Century writers - to base a new oratorio on the short story entitled "All About And To A Female Artist" (1964).

Shelagh Delaney assembled this prose piece from the mountains of negative, cynical, begging, sometimes threatening, often funny letters and harsh reviews (mostly critical of her gender) that she was bombarded with at just 19 years old following the enormous success of her debut play "A Taste Of Honey".


It is an honour for Stuart to be granted this permission - not only because of his immense respect for her writing talent and his enjoyment of her work, but also because Shelagh was very careful about who she allowed to work with her material, and her estate have turned other proposals down in the last 18 months that were felt inappropriate.

We now begin the work of arranging and funding the commission and performances of the oratorio, expected to premiere in September 2014. Dan Watson has confirmed that Thumb will perform the new work, which will again build on Stuart's experimentation into microtonal harmony; and feature instruments specifically adapted for that use (You can see a few of them on this site, customised by expert guitar man Jerry Crosson).