Something a little different

The repertoire at Marama Hall lunchtime concert this week was a little different, with the music all composed in the past 30 years.

New Compositions
Marama Hall
Wednesday, September 12

About a dozen wind and brass players opened with a whimsical marching item, in which all played a different tune as they marched in well-spaced single file on stage, off, out, down the stairs and back on stage, with strict rhythmic accuracy and harmonic intimacy. This world premiere was a fun work by Robbie Ellis.

Flute solo When you go it alone by Alex Campbell-Hunt was tuneful with varying nuance, and well interpreted by Justine Pierre.

A work for string quartet by Kerian Varaine, I: Every time I Try, II: I Fail, III: To Stand Up was in a category I define as "contemporary soundscape." The three movements went from ethereal (wishy-washy with glissando overload), through strong strident and wildly melodic, to a final mix of all previous elements.

In Memory of One Who Wished To Forget, by Alan Starrett, was a reflective piece with easily recalled thematic passages, as was All to Heaven by James Exton. Both were rather sombre.

Poems of Spring (1981), by Anthony Ritchie, consisted of eight short titled movements for pianoforte. Impressively performed by Tom McGrath, each had defined character, such as the bright Spring Dance, a cheeky Gig and a very modern Waltz .

The Root Vegetable, written and sung by Robbie Ellis with Corwin Newall at piano, was crudely operatic in style, with humorous text on the subject of preparing and cooking a meal. His excellent diction and visual interpretation exposed the humour of every line, but the baritone quality is best left unsaid!

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