I composed ’No Go’ for the Irish piper Eoin O’Riabhaigh and the Xenia Ensemble for the EstOvest ‘Hidden Treasures’ programme. I was excited to write for the virtuosic Xenia Ensemble, who performed my work with flair and dramatic gusto. The audience were treated to treasure after treasure in the half-light of the magnificent ‘Hall of the Kings’ in the Egyptian Museum, Turin: Mario Lavista’s ravishing ‘Reflections of the night’ opened the concert; O’Riabhaigh’s plaintive lament on the pipes led seamlessly into the mysterious opening of John Tavener’s ‘Hidden Treasures’; my ‘No Go’—a miniature concerto for Irish pipes and string quartet—mixed Irish-inspired tunes with brutal dissonance, to depict the violence of Northern Ireland during the Troubles (c.1969–98); I joined the performers on the fiddle at the end of the concert to play a few rousing Irish tunes as an encore. Audience members sought me out after the concert to tell me of their emotional reactions to ’No Go’, and to express their delight at such a fresh and exciting programme as ‘Hidden Treasures’.
Sean Doherty, Compositore