One of the 20 musical commissions announced for the 2012 London Olympics is a piece by composer Sally Beamish on a text by Times journalist Melanie Reid, who writes a weekly column, Spinal Chords, on life after breaking her neck in a fall from a horse.
I am really excited by this. Reid is an unmissable Saturday morning read. She writes in a voice that is neither brave nor maudlin, neither chin-up nor self-pitying, and with a no-nonsense verbal economy that draws us into her near-helpless state with more than just prurient, there-but-for-the-grace-of compassion. She’s a terrific writer.
Beamish is a subtle composer who is not afraid to be straight-spoken. The piece, a startling new take on the old stage adage, ‘break a leg’. will be premiered by the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. I can’t wait.