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Brisbane waters : for bass clarinet

by Betty Beath (1986)

Work Overview

Brisbane Waters, a solo for Bass Clarinet, was written for Ron Wakefield of California. He performed it in his recital program, presented by the City of Los Angeles Cultural
Affairs Department, at the Pacific-Asia Museum, in the Spring of 1987. The work may be performed as a solo piece or accompanied by a prepared CD featuring digeridu. The title Brisbane Waters is extracted from the words of the song, Moreton Bay, which is a much loved, Queensland folksong from the early days of white settlement. Unfortunately, the writer of the words is not known but it is likely the melody came to Australia from Ireland.
The decision to use melody from this folksong seemed apt as I was writing from a Brisbane address and knew the work would be programmed in a multi-cultural recital
featuring composition by writers from many parts of the world. As well, in its Bi-Centenary year, Australians were celebrating early settlement of the country by Europeans.
It was for this reason and also because an Aboriginal man has a part in this poem, I thought it was suitable to add the colour of digeridu. The two instruments, in contrast, represent the uneasy relationship between the two races at that time.
Betty Beath

Work Details

Year: 1986

Instrumentation: Bass clarinet.

Duration: 4 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

Dedication note: For Ron Wakefield, Pasadena, California

Commission note: Commissioned by Ron Wakefield, Pasadena, California

The work may be performed as a solo piece or with didjeridu accompaniment.


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