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Lookup NU author(s): Professor John Bowers



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of a musical composition published in its final definitive form in 2012. For re-use rights please refer to the publishers terms and conditions.


Power is for multiple (preferably massed ranks) of electric guitarists and bass players. Power was commissioned as a contribution to On Landguard Point, a series of events presented by the Pacitti Company as the eastern England region's London 2012 Cultural Olympiad contribution. Power was performed to camera by 16 guitarists at the Museum of East Anglian Life, Stowmarket on 31st July 2011 within a two day event with the overall title of An Edible Compass. This and other events are documented in the feature length movie of On Landguard Point.

Publication metadata

Composer(s): Bowers J

Publication type: Musical Composition

Publication status: Unpublished

Year: 2012

Notes: Power was commissioned by the Pacitti Company, a leading organisation curating, supporting and delivering live and performance art works. As part of the East Anglian, artist-led contribution to the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, Power is an essentially participatory piece in line with the concern for local community members to be involved in the Olympiad’s cultural activities. Power was written to be performable by an ensemble of guitarists with mixed abilities and little opportunity to rehearse, yet still be enjoyable for the musicians and impressive-sounding. The composition is based around power chords played by different groups within the ensemble in different registers. The score specifies the comings and goings of the various groups and how they play, slow or fast, dirty or (relatively) clean, strumming or feeding-back. Power explores reduced, though idiomatic, materials for the electric guitar and, as such, is a piece in the tradition of experimental compositions for electric guitar but more accessible for mixed ability performers than is commonly the case in those works. As well as being performed at the eastern region’s major museum of cultural history, Power was filmed for the feature length movie On Landguard Point, the Pacitti Company’s major output to the Cultural Olympiad. On Landguard Point has been screened numerous times around the region, at arts festivals (including Latitude 2012, SPILL 2013), at the Cornerhouse Manchester, the Barbican and ICA London, amongst others.