Free-man was premiered at St George’s Bristol, performed by the Chineke! Orchestra in May 2019. The piece honours activist Dr Paul Stevenson for his part in the Bristol Bus Boycott of 1963. The day after the premiere the orchestra took the work into the Bristol community, performing a free concert at the Malcolm X Community Centre in St Paul's.
Listen to an excerpt below...
Remnants for Poet and Orchestra
Remnants was inspired by a seminal moment in the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests in the UK, immortalized in the image captured by Thomson Reuters photographer Dylan Martinez of Patrick Hutchinson carrying a White counter-protester to safety. James set words by poet Yomi Sode to music for this piece, and the title also comes from Yomi's poetry. The performance in this film was part of the Black Legacies concert recorded on 19 October 2020 at Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall. Chineke! Orchestra was conducted by Kevin John Edusei with poet soloist Yomi Sode.
The Green Fuse
The Green Fuse was commissioned by the Cheltenham Festival for Chineke! Orchestra and first performed at the Pittville Pump Room, Cheltenham on 10 July, 2017. The inspiration for this piece of music came from a poem by Dylan Thomas called The force that through the green fuse drives the flower, written in 1934. 'The music opens with a burst of colour. The green fuse is lit.' This piece was recorded by Chineke! for the Spark Catchers album on NMC records. You can listen to the recording below.