Christopher Gunning’s knowledge and influences are widely eclectic and range from pop music, jazz and film music to Ravel, Bartok, Stravinsky, Ginastera and Lutoslawski. He argues that it should be possible to draw on various techniques to express a wide variety of emotions.
Christopher Gunning has composed twelve symphonies, as well as concertos for the piano, violin, cello, flute, oboe, clarinet, saxophone, and guitar; many of these have now been recorded. He has also composed many scores for films and television dramas, including Agatha Christie’s ‘Poirot’, La Vie en Rose, Middlemarch, Cold Lazarus, Rebecca, Under Suspicion, Firelight, The Big Battalions, Wild Africa, When the Whales Came and Porterhouse Blue. With a career spanning 50 years, he has won 4 BAFTA and 3 Ivor Novello Awards, and BASCA’s prestigious Gold Badge Award. Christopher studied composition with Edmund Rubbra and Sir Richard Rodney Bennett at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. After a hugely successful career writing for the big and small screen he is now focussed on his classical work and releases. All downloads include booklets.
Following the celebrated releases of Gunning’s Symphonies Nos. 2, 10 & 12 in 2019 and his concertos for Violin and Cello with the piece ‘Birdflight’ in 2020, Signum presents the recording of Symphonies Nos. 6 & 7 as well as his piece ‘Night Voyage’, performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Linked by the theme of journeying, Symphonies 6 & 7 explore Gunning’s fascination with a single movement form broken into several sub-sections. The piece ‘Night Voyage’ is a sea piece born on a rainy evening whilst the composer was standing on the edge of the Mersey river. Four-time BAFTA winning composer Christopher Gunning, has composed twelve symphonies as well as concertos for the piano, violin, cello, flute, oboe, clarinet, saxophone, and guitar. “Gunning’s [...] symphonies, numerous concertos and sundry orchestral pieces are as meticulously wrought as they are powerfully conceived.” - Richard Whitehouse, Gramophone
Christopher Gunning returns with recordings of his Violin Concerto, Cello Concerto and Birdflight. Not composed until 2011, Gunning's Violin Concerto was composed after inspiration whilst the composer was out hiking in Wales. The violin is supposed to represent ducking and weaving, rather like the insects and animals found in the Welsh hills and valleys. However, despite this positive venture for the composer, the emotions of sadness and melancholy are never far from this music - feelings which never seem far from Gunning's music. The Cello Concerto is quite different. Although composed hard on the heels of the Violin Concerto, it is generally darker though equally expressive. The third piece, Birdflight, is for the orchestra alone; a kind of tone poem. At the opening and close there is some quiet night music with spacious strings. The birds take flight but encounter a problem; a hawk is on their tail. The birds manage to hide and there is a pause. Then, when danger has passed, they take off and once again enjoy the sheer pleasure of flying. All downloads include booklets.