Three quarks, yesterday

Muster Mark’s Quarks (1997)

Three quarks for Muster Mark!
Sure he hasn’t got much of a bark
And sure any he has it’s all beside the mark.
But O, Wreneagle Almighty, wouldn’t un be a sky of a lark
To see that old buzzard whooping about uns shirt in the dark
And he hunting round for uns speckled trousers around by Palmerstown Park?

Hohohoho, moulty Mark!
You’re the rummest old rooster ever flopped out of a Noah’s ark
And you think you’re cock of the wark.
Fowls, up! Tristy’s the spry young spark
That’ll tread her and wed her and bed her and red her
Without ever winking the tail of a feather
And that’s how that chap’s going to make his money and mark!

— James Joyce, Finnegan’s Wake

Muster Mark’s Quarks consists of three short movements for string orchestra, each movement built up of tiny, fundamental objects: musical quarks. The title comes from James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake, as does the name of the fundamental particle, the quark.

  • 1. Allegro - Vivo - Tempo I - Tempo II - Tempo I
  • 2. Lento
  • 3. Vivace


Oxford Philomusica / Marios Papadopoulos, 16 June 2006, Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford


5 minutes


Strings (recommended at least