Dramatic Music

WorkInstrumentationWork Duration
The Feud Suite
  • Quintet: String Quartet, Piano + Narrator (opt. Soprano)
  • String Orchestra, Piano, Narrator (opt. Soprano)
7min
Da Vinci's Apprentice
  • Renaissance Ensemble
45min
7 Great Inventions of the Modern Industrial Age
  • Pierrot Ensemble + Perc.
59min

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The Feud Suite

The Feud Suite is a collection of 7 short movements of music separated by vivid poetry. The music for this suite was originally composed for an original film sound track for the short film The Nest directed by Em Cooper (London, UK). Upon returning to Canberra, I wanted to re-work the music score into a suite for concert hall and collaborated with Canberra writer Tanya Kiermaier, whose poetry harks poignantly towards the darker side of Australia's Montague Island history, with the following evocative poetry :

"...Through the bitterness of dark, the light circles,
deep and silent as the universe.
while wind flaps and hums through snarls of kikuyu
whips round the children’s graves
and flings itself out into the spreadeagled ocean..."

Instrumentation: Quintet: String Quartet, Piano + Narrator (opt. Soprano) - The poetry narration may be performed by a Soprano as one of the movements has an optional vocalise descant for soprano. Scored to work equally well for string quartet (or opt. quintet with optional Double Bass) or String Orchestra.
Duration: 7min
Difficulty: Medium
Year: 2014
Commissioned by: Em Cooper (UK) for her short film The Nest
Text/libretto/lyrics by: Tanya Kiermaier
Movements:
1. Wind, Sky, Shape Shifting Clouds
2. Dischod in Conversation
3. Unfeather Your Soul
4. On The Edge
5. Snarls of Kikuyu
6. The Children's Graves
Filed under: Chamber: Trio to Large Ensemble; Dramatic Music; Orchestral, Wind Symphony, Brass Band; String instruments
Instrumentation: String Orchestra, Piano, Narrator (opt. Soprano) - The poetry narration may be performed by a Soprano as one of the movements has an optional vocalise descant for soprano. Scored to work equally well for string quartet (or opt. quintet with optional Double Bass) or String Orchestra.
Duration: 7min
Difficulty: Medium
Year: 2014
Commissioned by: Em Cooper (UK) for her short film The Nest
Text/libretto/lyrics by: Tanya Kiermaier
Movements:
1. Wind, Sky, Shape Shifting Clouds
2. Dischod in Conversation
3. Unfeather Your Soul
4. On The Edge
5. Snarls of Kikuyu
6. The Children's Graves
Filed under: Chamber: Trio to Large Ensemble; Dramatic Music; Orchestral, Wind Symphony, Brass Band

Da Vinci's Apprentice

It’s 1495. 15 year old would-be inventor Roberta’s dream comes true when she’s invited by Leonardo Da Vinci to become his apprentice. However, when she realises Da Vinci thinks she is a boy, her determination to prove her abilities is tested.

Interwoven with the beautiful, Baroque-inspired compositions of Sally Greenaway, this exciting theatrical performance tells the story of a girl who faces obstacles in pursuit of her dream. With script by Catherine Prosser and Paul Bissett and music performed by Matthew Manchester and John Foster (cornetto), Jenny Eriksson (viola da gamba) and Shaun Ng (theorbo), Da Vinci’s Apprentice will inspire audiences to think differently about the world and find their inner inventor.

‘Da Vinci’s Apprentice’ is a Musica Viva In Schools production and will be touring to Australian schools 2018-2023.

Instrumentation: Renaissance Ensemble - Female voice (mezzo range D4-F5), Cornetto, Viola da Gamba, Theorbo
Duration: 45min
Year: 2017
Commissioned by: Musica Viva for their 'In Schools' program. The work is the first of its kind commissioned by Musica Viva for touring in schools.
Text/libretto/lyrics by: Magenius (Catherine Prosser, Paul Bissett)
Movements:
1. Overture
2. Camouflage
3. Planned Cities
4. Robots, Parachutes, Scuba!
5. Squish! Suspense
6. Spinning
7. All is Lost
8. Finale

Introducing Da Vinci's Apprentice from Musica Viva Australia on Vimeo.

Filed under: Dramatic Music

7 Great Inventions of the Modern Industrial Age

Embark upon a provoking and entertaining journey through 7 innovations that continue to shape humanity, the way we behave and the way we think.

Humanity has always sought to extend the boundaries of knowledge through innovation and discovery.
Yet, just over a hundred years ago there was no space travel, bionic ear, cinema, telephone network…
Or atomic bomb.

The innovation of the 20th century created opportunities and choices like never before.
And it changed us.


New music, old objects, an actor/ress and a chamber sextet combine in a dramatic work inspired by 20th century inventions that changed our lives forever.

Driven by celebrated Australian composer Sally Greenaway, featuring new music champions Syzygy Ensemble, a delightful and whimsical script by Paul Bissett and Catherine Prosser brought to life through a local actor (cast for each show).
Accompanied by stunning set and lighting design with over 100 historic 20th C. items long forgotten or since taken for granted.

Instrumentation: Pierrot Ensemble + Perc. - Flute (doubling Alto Flute), Bb Clarinet (doubling Bass Clarinet), Violin, Cello, Piano, Percussion (doubling drum kit)
Duration: 59min
Year: 2016
Commissioned by: Merlyn Myer Composing Women's Award in conjunction with Melbourne Recital Centre
Awards: APRA Art Music Awards 2017, Instrumental Work of the Year: Winner ACT State Award
Text/libretto/lyrics by: Magenius (Catherine Prosser, Paul Bissett)
Movements:
1. Invention-Reinvention
2. Telecommunications
3a. Prelude to Convenience
3b. The Age of Convenience
4. The Mechanical Brain
5a. And So Begins Massed World Warfare
5b. Postlude: Hymn to Freedom
6. The Miracles of Modern Medicine
7. The Advent of Cinema
8. Finale: The 7 Great Inventions.
Filed under: Dramatic Music; Woodwind instruments; String instruments