Listen to Ashton’s original composition submitted with his entry.

Ashton Parris [Age 14, NSW]

Composition: Victorious Horses

My name is Ashton Parris, I’m 14 and from Sydney. I started “making music” in year 3 with the school band (on trumpet) and choir program. Closer to the end of primary school I joined my school jazz band, being immediately put on lead, fun. This being said I believe I have only gained a great desire to create music in these early high school years, as I have stuck with all these types of ensembles, learnt a new instrument and am playing it in my school’s top concert band (tuba), joined the NSW Arts Unit Millenium Marching Band (on Sousa), and have arranged pieces for the school Big Band, top concert band, and choir. That last point bringing me to my work of composition, my composition work is fairly small, as I really only got introduced to it in year 7 and really started working on it in year 8, however a lot of that has been doing transcriptions/arrangements, rather than actual compositions, as I feel learning how other music is composed would be great inspiration into composition, so for that reason, combined with the fact that I start many projects without completion, my composition work is limited.

Composition Inspiration

It was quite hard to pinpoint my inspirations for “Victorious Horses” as I compose with my voice (singing what comes to mind), and the piece of music I wrote differs greatly from the music I generally listen to (Jazz and NYC Brass Band). The piece “Black River Overture” by Thomas Doss seems to be a subconscious inspiration with its many similar features, as well as Alfred Reed’s “The Hounds of Spring”, these two pieces being ones we have played in school concert band. Other inspirations include traditional fanfare pieces, which inspired the opening melody of my piece greatly, particularly its rhythm. A more subtle inspiration is Aaron Copland, in particular his “Fanfare for the Common Man” which uses brass very effectively fanfare wise and is inspirational for the brass arranging in my piece.

My piece “Victorious Horses” sets out to present a fanfare very reminiscent of traditional fanfares. This piece represents what a fanfare should be to me, very triumphant, grand, driving, and in particular, victorious, with imagery of horse cavalry in warfare being my visual inspiration.