Thanks so much to Alison Cotton for donating this test pressing copy of the sold out 10” EP ‘The Girl I Left Behind Me’. Released as a limited 500 copy run by Clay Pipe Music in 2019, the 2 extended instrumental viola pieces were written as soundtracks to Muriel Spark ghost stories.
"Last year, Alison was commissioned by BBC 6 Music’s Gideon Coe to create a soundtrack to the Muriel Spark ghost story ‘The Girl I Left Behind Me’. It was broadcast at Christmas and read by Bronwen Price. In the story, the narrator works in a London office, her first job after a long illness. As she leaves work one evening she is struck by a strong conviction that she has left something important at the office, but can't work out what it can be. Alison based this track around a simple melody composition following the form of the narrative, building up the suspense as the story draws to a dramatic and unexpected conclusion.
For the second side of the 10” Alison has created another piece inspired by a Muriel Spark ghost story ‘The House of the Famous Poet.’ This is also set in London, this time in 1944 against the wartime backdrop of the Blitz and V-1 sirens. On a delayed train journey, the narrator meets a soldier and a girl named Elise. Elise, a maid, invites the narrator to stay at the house where she works as the owners are away. The house turns out to be the home of a famous poet who the narrator greatly admires. The following morning, the story takes on a surreal nightmarish quality, when the soldier from the train turns up at the house with an enormous box that he says contains an ‘Abstract Funeral’ which he proceeds to sell to the protagonist. Later that day, both Elsie & the famous poet are killed when a bomb hits the poet's house. It was the idea of the abstract funeral that inspired Alison to create this piece; “The viola has a naturally mournful tone, and I endeavoured to capture the mood of how I'd imagine an 'abstract funeral' march would sound. My viola was completely improvised here, recorded in a single take. My layered vocals enhancing the melancholy and the crescendo of cymbals adding to the solemnity of the drama".
Online bidding ends at 11:59pm BST on 13th April 2020. There will no longer be a live room auction. We will contact anyone who has won on the 14th of April. Winners can either collect in person or have their item posted to them, though unfortunately due to the current situation we are unable to do this immediately. We will be in touch as soon as OTO is open again and we are able to post items or arrange a collection. Thank you.