Beyond the Atom

Five Particle Pieces for Large Ensemble
Performed by the Royal Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra (2020)

Programme Note

Beyond the Atom (2020) is a composition that explores and presents five short movements that represent different subatomic particles that are fundamental to our universe. The first four movements, namely Quarks, Leptons, Gauge Bosons and Higgs Boson, present musical textures of varying sonorities; all rooted in their foward-moving direction. The fifth movement represents the undescovered: Gravitons. This theoretical particle has yet to be discovered and is considered the missing link needed for the famously coined “Theory of Everything”. Here, the music loses all sense of direction, time and metre, wandering in musical and extra-musical questions that have yet to be answered during the composer’s lifetime.

Programme note by the composer
Back to top


The music of composer Conrad Asman (b. 1996) has gained international recognition as being “innovative and cutting edge” (Chorosynthesis) and spans a wide emotional range from “heart-rending” (The Esoterics), to “fun and festive” (Creative Feel). His works have been performed in Africa, Asia, Europe and America in venues such as Carnegie Hall, the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University and the Jinji Lake Concert Arena. Engagements with ensembles such as the Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra, the Esoterics singers, the CHROMA ensemble and the Cape Town Youth Choir have led to his work winning multiple major awards, scholarships and commissions worldwide.