Watts Chapel (2015) for solo guitar, a film by Luca Sage
filmed in Watts Chapel, Compton, Surrey, UK
Michael Partington - guitar
Watts Chapel is named after the Arts and Crafts memorial chapel built by Mary Watts in commemoration of her husband, the artist GF Watts. The chapel is situated close to my home in Surrey, England, and offers passers-by the opportunity for reflection and quiet contemplation.
My piece draws on the music of Gustav Mahler written around the time the chapel was built – specifically, fragments of the 3rd and 9th Symphonies, and the song Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen (I am lost to the world), from Rückert-Lieder. The Mahler references concern remembrance and the transience of mortality. My music is slow and spacious; it attempts to evoke the peaceful atmosphere of Watts Chapel.
The piece was commissioned by Michael Partington who gave the first performances in the US and the UK in the early part of 2016. This film was shot in August 2016, by kind permission of Watts Gallery Trust and Compton Parish Council.
'Watts Chapel' is published by Doberman Editions
Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen (Friedrich Rücker)
I am lost to the world
with which I used to waste so much time,
It has heard nothing from me for so long
that it may very well believe that I am dead!
It is of no consequence to me
Whether it thinks me dead;
I cannot deny it,
for I really am dead to the world.
I am dead to the world’s tumult,
And I rest in a quiet realm!
I live alone in my heaven,
In my love and in my song!