Psychologists agree that dreaming is essential to our mental well-being. Artists have always been intuitively aware of this, and the above lines are one illustration of this awareness. Composers, as well as painters and writers, have frequently drawn upon the fantastical imagery of dreams, and The World Again
is an attempt to convey some of the power of this imagery in music.
The work is cast in the shape of a rondo, with a coda which is really a summation of the piece. The ritornelli sections depict a dreamless sleep, and the episodes represent dreams. The ritornelli are based on a simple motif which is heard in either C major or minor, and never strays far from those keys.
The World Again was commissioned by the Royal Philharmonic and first performed by them on 9 October 1984 at the Royal Festival Hall with Jane Manning (soprano) and conducted by Andrew Litton.
In 1986 Christopher Bruce choreographed the work for the London Festival Ballet who gave the first performance on 18 July 1986 at the London Coliseum with the Orchestra of the London Festival Ballet with Sarah Leonard (soprano) and conducted by Graham Bond.