Pianist, organist, composer, arranger
Wing It - The Wallace and Gromit Prom
Iain’s jazz piece Wing It was performed at the Wallace and Gromit Prom in the Royal Albert Hall on 29th July, by Aurora Orchestra conducted by Nicholas Collon. The piece is essentially a humorous guide to the orchestra using a jazz improvisatory style, based on original material, Gershwin’s I Got Rhythm, and Julian Nott’s Wallace and Gromit Theme Tune. You can hear it here.
Some reviews of the work:
BBC Music Magazine website
“Most successful was Iain Farrington’s deft, jazzy and very 21st-century young person’s guide to the orchestra, Wing It. Needing only the briefest of cues from Collon, the piece springs into life with a walking bass and spotlights each instrument and section with flair, mixing I got rhythm with the Wallace and Gromit theme tune. It was presented as a spur-of-the-moment improvisation – and genuinely sounded like it.”
“Having offered the orchestra crackers (gamely accepted by the cellists) and asked them whether they knew a good tune, a keen trumpeter piped up with the Wallace and Gromit theme – but we'd already had that. What followed was an absolute triumph. Iain Farrington's Wing It was a Britten-style children's guide to the orchestra, albeit one inspired by jazz improvisations. The collective trumpets still couldn't do better than a (so bad, yet so, so good) swing version of the theme tune, but the other sections proved a little more imaginative. About halfway through, it became clear where the piece was going, and suspicions were proved when, at the end, the orchestra played a magnificently punchy version of Gershwin's I Got Rhythm. Words cannot describe the buzz the orchestra created; it was a fun, funny, and very appealing piece.”
“ ‘Do you know any good tunes?’ Collon asks the orchestra, and the trumpets pipe up with the Wallace and Gromit theme, but we’ve already had that. What follows, with Collon introducing families of instruments and individual instruments by turn was akin to Britten’s Young Person’s Guide, but melded Gershwin’s I got rhythm and the Wallace and Gromit theme tune in an unfolding set of colourful variations, eventually credited to Iain Farrington.”
With Merlin Crossingham (left) and Nick Park (right), the creators and directors of Wallace and Gromit.
Gromit and Tasmin Little perform in Gromit’s Double Concerto for Violin and Dog