Becky Llewellyn : Represented Artist
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Photo: Naomi Clarke
Becky Llewellyn writes as a witness to the world's pain and beauty. She delights in using the power of music to connect with her listeners. Llewellyn is interested in the symbolic meanings of music and uses a simple approach to create complex emotional shades that reflect our human experience.
Llewellyn was born in 1950 and grew up in Minnesota in a large musical family. She migrated to Australia in 1969 at the time of the Vietnam War and has created a rich life in Australia since that time. She has worked professionally as a special education teacher and, for 20 years, as a disability access consultant in addition to her composing career. Llewellyn has two children, two step-children and six grandchildren.
Llewellyn began composing in the mid-1980s. She studied with Graeme Koehne at the Adelaide Elder School of Music. In 1991, with fellow composers of ACME New Music Company, Llewellyn hosted the first Composing Women's Festival in Adelaide, a ground-breaking celebration of Australian composers in many genres including indigenous women's music from Central Australia. The Festival went on to be celebrated in several other Australian cities.
In 2002, Move Records released Milerum's Basket, featuring a selection of her works from the 1990s. She received her Master of Music in 2007 from the University of Adelaide. In 2008, her sacred music cycle, Soul Architecture, was featured on the CD, Syntony, from Adelaide's a cappella ensemble. Her works for chamber ensemble, choir, orchestra and solo performers have delighted audiences in Australia, the US and UK.
Llewellyn wrote the libretto and score for The Portrait, a chamber opera performed by Co-Opera. As a musical tribute to the Adelaide-born World War II war artist, Stella Bowen, it explores the joys and disillusionments in her relationship with the writer Ford Madox Ford. She was commissioned by Co-Opera to develop the project in 2003 which was interrupted when her husband was diagnosed with terminal cancer and died in May 2004. From February to May 2005, Llewellyn wrote the opera which Co-Opera presented as three work in progress performances in July. The Portrait had its world premiere at the Adelaide Festival Centre Space Theatre in February 2006 and a 20-person tour of the orchestrated version had seven performances NSW, ACT and Victoria in September 2006. The final performance is filmed and available on DVD.
Llewellyn has completed a new piece of sacred music called Reformation Liturgy: St Stephens Service. It's premiere was October 29th 2017, the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther's starting the movement to Protestant churches. The work has the traditional form of a mass and has proved easy to teach local congregations who worship wtih a sung liturgy. It is scored for organ and flute/trumpet, choir and also chamber ensemble. Chords are provided for guitar and other adaptations for congregations to make it their own.
Becky Llewellyn — current to October 2017
|Five minutes past midnight : A radiophonic story||Jaroslav Kovaricek, for Inner Space program on ABC Classic FM.|
||Song web : final movement of Sticks and stones||Ryszard Pusz|
|The Portrait : a musical tribute to Stella Bowen (2006)||Commissioned by Co-Opera's General Manager, Brian Chatterton|
|Rothko's red : full orchestra (2003)||Commissioned by Graeme Koehne for performance by Adelaide Symphony Orchestra.|
|Carol of the font : from Soul architecture (2002)||Commissioned by Syntony.|
|The Church-floor : from Soul architecture (2002)||Commissioned and first performed by Syntony.|