There is something innately human about cherishing one's deepest desires while knowing that they are impossible. Part of the model in this work is also the folly that a flute - the instrument itself - might harbour its own secret wishes. In a universe where all is possible, what might a flute dream?
The work uses one of my preferred architectures: a single movement with three sections in the classic form moderate-slow-fast. Although the solo line is unashamedly virtuosic, the intention is not to dazzle but to explore as much dreaminess as possible, filtered through the wilfulness of a metal pipe which believes it has no limits. There is no specific consideration in this music of the opium pipe, from which the term pipe dream originates.
Pipe Dreams was commissioned by ABN AMRO for the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Emmanuel Pahud in celebration of new Australian music. It was first performed by those musicians on 12th July, 2003 at the Concert Hall of the Sydney Opera House, Australia.