Willow Songs

Date: 26 September 2009 
Venue: Trackdown Scoring Stage, Moore Park

Presented by the New Music Network & Halcyon

Japanese haiku has been a influential poetic form from the 16th century until the present age of twitter-inspired 'twaiku'.  This succinct poetic style responds beautifully to a vocal chamber music setting; each carefully chosen word can inspire fresh musical colours.  Halcyon showcases the talents of composers from around the globe, including Roberto Gerhard, Anne Boyd, Elena Firsova, Colin Matthews and Julian Yu, with a selection of contemporary haiku settings for voice and instruments. The performance culminates in the world premiere of a new song cycle by composer, writer and broadcaster Andrew Ford, on poems by Anglo-American poet Anne Stevenson. Willow Songs is a picture of a woman’s life in reverse, from defiant, outrageous maturity to vulnerable girlhood.

Julian Yu - Four Haiku (1992)                   
Anne Boyd - 3 songs from Cycle of Love (1981)
Elena Firsova - Seven Haiku after Matsuo Basho Op. 47 (1991) ^
Roberto Gerhard - Sept Haiku (1922/58)               
Ton de Leeuw - Song I & III from Haiku: Songs and Interludes for voice and piano (1963)
Colin Matthews - Strugnell’s Haiku (1990)                              
Andrew Ford - Willow Songs  (2009) *
* World premiere  ^ Australian premiere

Mark Shiell  conductor  Alison Morgan  soprano  Jenny Duck-Chong  mezzo soprano  Sally Walker  flutes   Laura Chislett Jones alto flute  Jason Noble  clarinets  Rie Tamaru  oboe   Gillian Hansen  bassoon  John Douglas  percussion  Stephanie McCallum piano  Sally Whitwell  piano  Steven Meyer  cello  Joseph Littlefield  guitar