Visions in Blue : for oboe and piano
by John Peterson (2017)
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Library shelf no. 788.52/PET 1 [Not for loan]
Visions in Blue was written especially for oboist Kate
Mostert and, as such, the extramusical themes that inspired this
work come from my understanding of Kate's own life
'Big City Blues' is not a 'blues' as such, but the title refers more to the state of anxiety in which we sometimes find ourselves when dealing with the frustrations of living in a big city. The music begins without introduction in a fast, very rhythmic, and hyperactive state and remains that way for much of the movement, reflecting the relentless pressures of everyday life. Ultimately, though, the music is also both playful and determined, which I believe reflects Kate's general outlook on life.
'Across the Oceans Deep and Blue' is inspired by the fact that Australia is an island continent, and the music represents a vision of the deep blue oceans that Kate had to cross in order to migrate firstly from South Africa, the country of her birth, to New Zealand, where she spent her formative years, and then finally across another ocean in order to reach Australia, where she now lives. The oboe melodies begin with simple
statements of motivic figures that continue to develop in intensity as the music progresses, all the while supported by piano music that is frequently built on harmonies derived from perfect 5th intervals that are intended to reinforce the concept of the strength and power of the sea and the richness of the colour of the ocean itself.
'Under Bright Blue Skies' is, like the first movement, fast paced and very rhythmic, but the music here is much less anxious in tone and is intended to be much more like a joyous celebration of living in wide open, and richly diverse, landscapes under beautiful blue skies, whether they be in South Africa, New Zealand, or Australia. As such this music acts to unite the visions of the diverse countries in which Kate has lived during her lifetime.
Instrumentation: Oboe, piano.
Duration: 12 min.
Contents note: I: Big City Blues (3 min., 40 sec.) -- II: Across the Oceans Deep and Blue (4 min., 15 sec.) -- III: Under Bright Blue Skies (3 min., 45 sec.).
Dedication note: For Kate Mostert
Commission note: Commissioned by Lyndie and David Leviston, Emily and Andrew Blomberg, especially for Kate Mostert on the occasion of her 21st birthday 8th June, 2017
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