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Song of Songs
Sound Lur and...
St Peter's Suite
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Stick Dance III
Symphony No. 1...
Symphony No. 2...
Symphony No. 3...
To the evening...
Chorale, Demon, Beacon (1995)
Chorale, Demon, Beacon is a twelve minute work scored for the 17 string
bass koto and percussion quartet. The players are arranged across the
stage from left to right: Percussion 4 – Percussion 2 – Bass
Koto – Percussion 1 – Percusssion 3. The ‘outer’
percussionists play untuned percussion to a large extent whilst the first
and second players play mostly on vibraphones.
As a student in Brisbane I can recall looking in the evening at the four
television towers that were perched on Mt Coot-tha. Each had a flashing
light as a beacon and each light ran at a different pulse constantly changing
in their overall relation to one another as they progressed in their independent
cycles. Whimsically, it crossed my mind once or twice that if ever the
beacons coincided something special should happen (a cosmic event or at
least a good TV mini-series for example) and perhaps it did because Brisbane
has changed and is no longer so quiet in the evenings.
That idea of separate but very slow pulses which rarely if ever intersect
has provided the basis for a number of my pieces. In this work it is treated
as the background for the development of a few fragments of material:
a hymn-like phrase (heard throughout but most clearly at the end), a melodic
phrase which opens the piece and various solos, duets and trios for the
koto and two vibraphones. Percussion 3 and 4 play bass drums, a Korean
gong and a tam tam in slow pulses doubled by bass notes in the koto; when
two pulses happen at once phrases change, when three happen at once a
new section starts, when all four coincide (once in the piece) things
are turned on their head.
Chorale, Demon, Beacon was commissioned by Synergy Percussion for Synergy
and Kazue Sawai with funding assistance from the Australia Council . The
piece was composed in June and July 1995 and, in part, whilst in residence
at the Leighton Studios, Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada.
Contact and Purchasing Links
Buy, borrow, hire scores, parts & recordings, plus all other enquiries: Australian Music Centre
Tel: + 61-2-9935 7805
Tollfree: 1300 651 834
Fax: + 61-2-9935 7805
Buy CD recordings on line from Buywell
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