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Instrumentation: 1+Picc.222/2221/timp+3perc/str
Duration: 4:00
Year Composed: 1997

David Currie & Robert Rival discuss Overture
at a rehearsal. (photo by Peter Lindell)

Also available as a transcription for piano.

Audio Samples (mp3)


Program Notes

I composed this overture, my first work for orchestra, when I was a 21-year-old music student. It was premiered in November 1997 by David Currie and the University of Ottawa Orchestra, an ensemble in which I had formerly played the violin. Currie later performed it with the Ottawa Symphony on two different seasons. After one performance, an audience member told me this boisterous Allegro con spirito reminded her of a busy train station. Another said he imagined walking around a market, its vendors competing for his attention as he passed by their stalls. Although I had no program in mind when writing the piece both images strike me as apt. Now strident, now cheerful, now bright and energetic, now dark and powerful, now playful and witty, in four short minutes Overture takes the listener from a biting opening through a whirlwind of change to a triumphant close. —R.R.


  • Jun 22, 2016—National Academy Orchestra, cond. Boris Brott
    Sanderson Performing Arts Centre (Brantford, ON)
  • Oct 19, 2014—Brantford Symphony Orchestra, cond. Philip Sarabura
    Sanderson Centre (Brantford, ON)
  • May 5, 2012—Deep River Symphony Orchestra, cond. Peter Morris
    Deep River, ON
  • Jan 24, 2005—Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, cond. David Currie
    National Arts Centre (Ottawa, ON)
  • Jul 13, 2002—National Academy Orchestra, cond. Boris Brott
    Hamilton, ON
  • May 22, 2000—Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, cond. D.Currie
    National Gallery of Canada (Ottawa, ON)
  • Mar 13, 2000—Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, cond. D.Currie
    National Arts Centre
  • Feb 20, 2000—Ottawa Youth Orchestra, cond. J.Gomez
  • Nov 1997—University of Ottawa Orchestra, cond. D.Currie


"Reminiscent of the outer movements of Shostakovich's 'jolly' symphony, the ninth ... [Overture] is solid, engaging and a good listen." — Ottawa Citizen
"A brisk and bounding overture." — Toronto Star
"pleasant curtain-raiser" — Ottawa Citizen

Score Perusal & Parts Rental

For score perusal and parts rental information, contact Robert Rival.