Born in 1975, Alastair grew up in the Shetland Isles off the north East Coast of Scotland, UK. He studied at the Royal College of Music (London) with Joseph Horovitz and Dr. John Birch (1993 – 1997), the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with Robert Saxton and Graham Elliot (1997 – 98) and Royal Holloway, University of London with Simon Holt (1998 – 2001) where he graduated with a PhD in composition. Whilst in London he was assistant organist at Wesley’s Chapel, the Mother Church of World Methodism, and gave recitals throughout the UK.
Since moving to America in 2002, he has given recitals throughout Pennsylvania, Ohio, Georgia, New York and Iowa as well as presenting workshops on new repertoire and composition. In 2017 he was appointed Minister of Music at Grace Congregational Church in Rutland, Vermont.
As a composer he has written for almost every genre. Ensembles and soloists such as the Philharmonia Orchestra, Brunel, Continuum and Composer’s Ensembles, Ixion, Gilde and Belmonte Quartets, Contemporary Consort, New Noise, Scottish Chamber Ensemble, Chroma, pianist Rolf Hind and mezzo soprano Sarah Walker have performed his work. His work has been featured at numerous British festivals and cathedrals. Recently he has completed commissions for the New London Children’s Choir, the Rothko String Trio, the University of Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and violinist Roger Zahab who performed his solo violin work A Reel Sweet Kiss in New York City and which was then broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland. His latest works, Suite for Trumpet and Organ, Haiku Sketches for the Young New Yorker’s Chorus and Fanfares for the Pittsburgh Youth Philharmonic Orchestra were all premiered to much acclaim. In 2005 he won the William Mathias Composition Award and was a featured composer in the Kings Lynn Festival (UK).
Include Text of piece for inside cover
Sweet Savior, bless us ere we go;
Thy word into our minds instill,
And make our lukewarm hearts to glow
With lowly love and fervent will.
Through life’s long day and death’s dark night,
O gentle Jesus, be our light.
The day is done, its hours have run,
And thou hast taken count of all,
The scanty triumphs grace hath won,
The broken vow, the frequent fall.
Grant us, dear Lord, from evil ways
True absolution and release;
And bless us, more than in past days,
With purity and inward peace.