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Series Two      

 

Series Two, composed in the latter months of 2007, adopted the same goals and composing techniques as pioneered in Series One, three years before. As described below in the notes for 5024 no.1, the discovery of an improved version of the "super-efficient" block motivated the new arrangements, and this block features in every peal. Compared to the earlier series, music counts are up as a result of the new block, but there are slightly more course end calls; although two snap-finish compositions keep the twenty courses, all the round-blocks reduce this to nineteen.

The highlight of this series is almost certainly 5056 no.1. It has a beautiful structure, and was one of the few single-method, tenors-together compositions to feature in Philip Earis's "Compositions of the Decade". It has I think proved deservedly popular; nevertheless there is plenty of interest in the other compositions.

2013 update: I have a new series of Spliced Surprise compositions based on the 5056 no.1 Bristol calling. See my spliced page for full details.

Series Two:
5024 no.172, 23, 134John Fisher, June 2008
5056 no.172, 20, 134Philip Earis, December 2007
5120 no.272, 23, 134Mark Esbester, August 2008
5088 no.472, 23, 136Peter Sheppard, December 2007
5026 no.272, 17, 126Ben Carey, March 2008
5026 no.372, 24, 120Stuart Hutchieson, February 2008


5024 Bristol Surprise Major (no.1)

Composed by Mark B Davies

  23456   H  M  B  W
  ------------------
  54326   -        -
  23645      2  -  2
  56342         2  2
  64523         -
  25463   -        -
  24365   2  -  5
  26354   -     -
  36452      -
  35426   -     -
  24536   -        -
  43265         -
  53462      2
  63254   -  -     -
  23456      -
  ------------------

Contains:
  72 5678/8765 front and back
  23 6578 back
  134 LB4
  39 LB5

This is the first of a new series of tenors-together Bristol Major compositions, that came about when I revisited my original ‘20 course’ arrangements from 2004. The original peals (in particular 5026 no.1 and 5088 no.3) have been very successful, and at the time I thought their combination of back-bell and little-bell music, distributed evenly between front and back using short courses linked by very few calls, was pretty much unbeatable.

But it turns out there are improvements. The ‘super-efficient’ block of the earlier peals, which links together the 23456, 34256, 56234 and 56342 coursing orders in order to provide nearly half the 5678/8765 rollups, was (to my surprise) flawed. Here is that original block, with coursing orders:

    23456
  B 62345
  B 56234
  M 56342
  H 53462
  W 34562
  B 23456
  W 34256
  B 63425

Note how the 23456 course is split into two parts, and the segment of the less-desirable 34562 coursing order which is included by the block. Also the length of the block: 5.5 courses.

Here’s the new, optimised version:

    62345
  B 56234
  M 56342
  H 53462
  B 25346
  H 23456
  W 34256
  B 63425

This is a course shorter, but includes almost identical music, with no undesirable coursing orders. It is also an exact palindrome. How could I have missed it?!

This 5024 is one example of what can be achieved with the new ‘optimal’ block. Compared to my 5088 no.3, it is two leads (and one course) shorter, but has all 72 5678/8765 rollups (compared to 70), with the loss of just one little-bell run. (See also the new 5120 and 5088 no.4, both of which maintain the little-bell count).

OK, the improvement may seem relatively small, perhaps demonstrating the quality of the original compositions, but I think it is useful nevertheless. Here are the highlights of the new arrangement:

  1. Includes all five LB5 coursing orders: 53246, 64235, 24653, 35642 and 53462.
  2. The four LB6 runs from coursing orders 46532 and 23564 are also present.
  3. All 72 of the available 5678/8765 rollups, front and back, spread evenly throughout the peal: 52436 and 54326 near the start, but separated; the 56xxx and xxx56 coursing orders pulled in using the block of 5 Befores in the middle of the peal, and the ‘optimal super-efficient’ block which makes up the closing section; and finally, as in the 5088 no.3, the plain course at the very end.
  4. Plenty of other music throughout, including the LB4 coursing orders 24536, 25346, 63542 and 65324, and 23 out of the 24 6578 rollups.


5056 no.1 / 5120 no.2 Bristol Surprise Major

Composed by Mark B Davies

  23456  H M B W
  --------------
  54326  -     -
  42563      -
  24365  - - 5
  26354  -   -
  36452    -
  35426  -   -
  24536  -     -
  43265      -
  53462    2
  63254  - -   -
  52436    -   -
  34625    -   -  *
  26543    -   -
  64352    -   2
  34256    -
  23456  -
  --------------

For 5120, call 2M B 2W for
course marked *

Contains:
  72 5678/8765 front and back
  20(23) 6578 back
  134 LB4
  40 LB5
  All 7 near-misses

The 5056 is I think my favourite of the new series of short-course Bristol peals. Like most of the new arrangements, it has 19 courses in place of the 20 of the original peals, but improves on the older models by upping the back-bell rollup count to the maximum (with tenors together) of 72. But the 5056 is special because it also achieves the goal of ‘no duffers’ - that is, not one of its 19 courses contain undesirable coursing orders, apart from isolated transitional leads around the course end.

This is a remarkable achievement which I have not discovered in any other ‘short-course’ arrangement. The seamless link from one musical course to the next is achieved, on average, by fewer than 1.8 calls.

The 5056 also has an interesting structure in that both the desirable ‘5 Befores’ coursing order sequences are included: the first, from coursing order 64235, occurs near the start of the peal; the second, from 53246, is rung at the end of the peal, but in reverse, using repeated WM transitions instead of Befores. Although slightly less efficient than Befores, ringing these courses in the reverse order is supremely elegant, and means amongst other things that the plain course can be buried in the middle of the peal. The overall structure of the peal has a rather delightful palindromic feel to it:

  1. Opening section, with 52436.
  2. The five Befores from 64235.
  3. The centrepiece of the peal: the ‘optimal superefficient’ block, itself exactly palindromic.
  4. The five Befores from 53246, rung in reverse using the WM transition.
  5. Closing course, 54326.

The only small downside compared to the other new compositions is the decrease in the 6578 rollup count. However, at the expense of a couple of leads and a degree of elegance, this can be corrected. The 5120 (no.2) replaces the MW in the middle course of the last ‘5 Befores’ block with MMBWW, in order to gather up another three 6578s and bring the total back up to 23.

The 5056 calling above forms the basis of a new series of Spliced Surprise Major compositions: See my spliced page.


5088 Bristol Surprise Major (no.4)

Composed by Mark B Davies

  23456  H M B W
  --------------
  54326  -     -
  23645    2 - 2
  56342      2 2
  64523      -
  25463  - - - 2
  24365  2 - 5
  26354  -   -
  36452    -
  35426  -   -
  24536  -     -
  43265      -
  53462    2
  63254  - -   -
  23456    -
  --------------

Contains:
  72 5678/8765 front and back
  23 6578 back
  136 LB4
  39 LB5

This arrangement has the highest music count of any of my new ‘19-course’ arrangements: one more little-bell run than the 5120, and two more than the 5024, with the same back-bell music. But it is perhaps less elegant, with heavier use of paired calls and longer transitions around some of the course ends, particularly in the opening section of the peal. Nevertheless, it is hopefully a useful addition to the canon. Please let me know if you ring it.


5026 Bristol Surprise Major (no.2)

Composed by Mark B Davies

  23456  M B W H
  --------------
  52436    5 -
  32465  s   s
  26354    -
  43652  -     -
  43526    -   -
  24536      -
  43265    -
  45362  2     -
  62453    - 2
  34256  -     -
  32546      - 2
 (42536)   5 s
  --------------

Contains:
  72 5678/8765 front and back
  17 6578 back
  126 LB4
  37 LB5

This is an improvement over my 20-course 5026 no.1. It uses the ‘palindromic super-efficient’ block from the new 5024 and 5056 peals, plus use of singles within the calling, to generate the same music as the original 5026 but with an extra course of little-bell music (126 LB4 runs as opposed to 120, plus one extra LB5).

For further notes, see my one-part 5024, 5056 and 5088 no.4 peals, also on this site. Note that, unlike the round-block arrangements, this peal (and its sister, 5026 no.3) contain the full twenty courses.


5026 Bristol Surprise Major (no.3)

Composed by Mark B Davies

  23456  M B W H
  --------------
  52436    5 -
  32465  s   s
  26354    -
  43652  -     -
  43526    -   -
  24536      -
  34265    -   s-
  62345      - s
  62453    -   -
  34256  -     -
  32546      - 2
 (42536)   5 s
  --------------

Contains:
  72 5678/8765 front and back
  24 6578 back
  120 LB4
  35 LB5

The final composition in my new series of short-course Bristol peals: this one is unique in including all 24 of the 6578 rollups, as well as the full count of 72 5678/8765. Little-bell counts are slightly reduced, however they are still directly comparable with the original 5026 no.1, which contained just 17 6578 rollups.

 

MBD July 2010