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Work

Babylon: the hanging gardens : for orchestra

by Brendan Colbert (1997)

Score Sample

View a sample of the score of this work

Audio Sample

Performance by Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Sir William Southgate from the CD Live recordings for AMC archive

Live recordings for AMC archive

Non-Commercial

This item is not commercially available from the Australian Music Centre. We regret that we cannot offer it for sale.

CD

Live recordings for AMC archive : Disc 1 / Brendan Colbert.

Library shelf no. CD 2259 [Available for loan]

Babylon: the hanging gardens

$133.82

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Score

Babylon: the hanging gardens : for orchestra / Brendan Colbert.

Library shelf no. Q 784.2/COL 1 [Available for loan]

Work Overview

Although Babylon (The Hanging Gardens) is not a programmatic piece it does naturally reflect (to some extent at least) my thoughts and attitudes during the years of its composition. For me, the ancient city is most strongly associated with conflicting images of beauty and corruption, and it is therefore perhaps significant that this piece was written in the Melbourne of the mid 1990's. Lyrics from English songwriter Peter Hammill were also very much in my mind during the period, some of this imagery doubtless finding its way into the piece as it progressed.


…Babylon…

seventh wonder of the earth:

gardens ablaze in colour,

slowly rotting in the dirt…

…The hanging gardens sing,

but with a hollow ring…

[from MODERN, by Peter Hammill.]


…If you cross the stream

you never can return,

If you stay…

[from RUBICON, by Peter Hammill.]


…Jericho's strange,

throbbing with life at its heart:

people are drawn together,

simultaneously torn apart…

[from MODERN, by Peter Hammill.]


Fuse
(as the title would suggest) is short and to the point, while Rubicon is somewhat deeper and darker. Jericho's Strange begins chaotically and in an aggressive and unsettled manner, this restlessness being eventually subdued, making way for a calmer texture that is more one of resignation than of resolution.

Work Details

Year: 1997

Instrumentation: 3 flutes (3rd doubling piccolo), 3 oboes (3 doubling cor anglais), 3 clarinets in B flat (3rd doubling bass clarinet in B flat), 3 bassoons (3rd doubling contra bassoon), 4 horns in F, 3 trumpets in C, 2 tenor trombones, bass trombone, tuba, percussion (2 players), piano, strings.

Duration: 16 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

Contents note: I. Fuse -- II. Rubicon -- III. Jericho's strange.

First performance: by Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Sir William Southgate — 17 Nov 95. ABC Music Centre, Ferry Road, Brisbane

3rd movt previously titled Sanctuary and revised for this work.

Each of the 3 movements may be played as a separate work in its own right.

Performances of this work

17 Nov 95: ABC Music Centre, Ferry Road, Brisbane . Featuring Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Sir William Southgate.

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