First performed by Imogen Cooper at the Cheltenham Festival, Thomas Adès’s Traced Overhead (1995-6) unfolds in three movements of progressively increasing length. The first, ‘Sursum’ (the Latin adverb of upward motion), is marked velocissimo quasi senza peso (very fast, as if without weight), and lasts for under a minute. In ‘Aetheria’ the atmosphere is expanded and the ascent is continued before the movement ends with a massive, controlled slowing down, leading without a break into ‘Chori’ (choruses). This movement continues the ascent through the strata. The slow-moving layers of three part-chords create a sense of vertical space in which a new and richly harmonised melody is unfolded. The work ends with a tumble earthwards, descending through the previously-explored levels.