Seven Rocks

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For String Trio or String Quartet

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In seven short movements, for strings and spoken voice, in which the compositional form of the music represents the processes that each rock undertook in its formation, for example extreme pressure or slow layerings.  This is moulded by a more abstract appreciation of the landscape or rock.  Slate, for example, is formed of large, fairly featureless slabs with very sharp edges, so this is reflected in the musical texture too. The human voice is an important part of the composition, with selected quotations from each poem in the sequence preceding its associated movement.


  • Violin: Christopher Jones
  • Viola: Kay Stephen
  • Cello: Anna Menzies
  • Spoken word: Antoinette Fawcett

Photographs © John Troll 2014

Norman Nicholson

Norman Cornthwaite Nicholson OBE, (8 January 1914 – 30 May 1987), was an English poet, known for his association with the Cumbrian town of Millom. His poetry is noted for its local concerns, straightforwardness of language, and inclusion of elements of common speech. Although chiefly known for poetry, he also wrote many works in other forms: novels, plays, essays, topography and criticism.