My output could be described as Serious Fun. Even when studying with the most extreme of avant-garde composers I retreated from ‘aridity’ and (deliberate?) audience alienation.

While studying in Liège. I visited an acquaintance of mine in the Netherlands – Dr Hans Rookmaaker, Professor of the History of Art at the Vrijuniversiteit van Amsterdam. I related my unease at composing out-and-out avant-garde music whilst at the same time having a strong pull towards tonal harmony and melody and of how I couldn’t get the two to meet. He replied “Why not?”

I took this as a challenge to go away and find a solution. Part of the way of addressing this was the including of quotations from well-known composers from the past and the interweaving of the contours of these melodies to create textures which were my own. My professor, Henri Pousseur, who was very instrumental in setting up the theory and practice of the Post-Webernian School, frequently quoted from the past.

Having considered his procedures together with those of Charles Ives, Poulenc and the self-confessed kleptomaniac Stravinsky, I felt that I had carte-blanche to freely quote from others.

As a result, I have been known to say that I was the first Post Modern composer – long before it was ever dreamed of. I must temper this claim by saying that while it is possible to find very disparate elements in my music (translated into Post Modernism – ‘anything goes’), at the same time my pieces are not without form and structure (‘WITHOUT’ – being an accusation against Post Modern art in general!)