Original Music by John Pattison

John Pattison has created an original musical

score to accompany the Untangled Threads

1568 Sawdust Hearts Project.

In the spirit of this contemporary reimagining

of the First World War sweetheart pincushions,

John has chosen to create a four-movement piece

of classical music using modern musical

technology. This new score has elements of

homage to some of the great British composers

and music from this period.  The intention of the

composer is to complement the visual aspects

of this exhibition and to enhance the experience

through sound.

Four Years by John Pattison

1st Movement 1914 - 1915      Lento

2nd Movement 1915 - 1916    Allegro

3rd Movement 1916 - 1917     Scherzo

4th Movement 1917 - 1918     Andante Con Moto

The whole suite will accompany the 1,568 Sawdust Hearts exhibition.

John studied composition at Dartington College of Arts with composer Helen Glatz.

Helen had in turn studied with Ralph Vaughan Williams and through her, the latter’s music came to be a major source of inspiration to and influence on an eager young Pattison!


Vaughan Williams was inspired to write his third symphony following his time as a stretcher bearer in France and Salonika. Composer Arthur Bliss was wounded twice and gassed once. His wartime experiences, particularly the death of his younger brother had a huge impact on his later music.  George Butterworth, composer of the quintessentially English ‘The Banks of Green Willow’ was tragically shot by a sniper during the battle of the Somme in 1916. Vaughan Williams dedicated his own post war ‘London Symphony’ to Butterworth. In 1918 Scottish composer Cecil Coles, a protégé of Gustav Holst was also killed whilst recovering casualties. Stretcher bearer was the traditional role of army bandsmen and musicians when not performing.


Having written for full orchestra and traditional instruments in the past, John has a long-held fascination with creating convincing and realistic scores with sampled instruments and more recently with physically modelled instruments. For this score, John will be using a combination of physically modelled piano by the French company Pianoteq, violin and cello by the Italian company SWAM and a full sample based Orchestra programmed by the composer from an original set of samples by Polish music producer Peter Siedlaczeck. The SWAM Cello features heavily in the music for this exhibition. This is played using another recent technology, the Seaboard, which was developed originally in London by the American musician and entrepreneur, Roland Lamb in 2009. This instrument takes the concept of the piano keyboard to a new dimension, allowing the player to manipulate its spongy silicon surface with five different types of touch.



John Pattison has written numerous score for Theatre and Film. He has worked extensively with British playwrights Alan and Ayckbourn and John Godber composing incidental music and co-writing several original stage musicals. He has composed two film scores for French Film director Alain Resnais, created a new score for ‘The Balloonatic’ by Buster Keaton and composed a full-length ballet for York City Council about alcoholism. John Pattison and Alison Watt are Joint Artistic Directors for Beach Hut Theatre Company CIO who create outstanding, innovative and entertaining performances in both traditional and non-traditional playing spaces, using original writing, music, technology and theatrical experimentation in Scarborough, North Yorkshire.  www.beachhuttheatre.co.uk

Unknown Track - Unknown Artist
00:00 / 00:00

"Delighted to be back doing what I love the best, composing, Old School, with some manuscript paper, a bunch of 2B pencils and a Bechstein Grand. I couldn't be happier."

Beach Hut Logo Colour.png
Excerpt from 'The Balloon goes Up' (Allegro)