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Work

Fly away Peter : chamber opera in one act

by Elliott Gyger and Pierce Wilcox (2015)

Work Overview

Fly Away Peter is based on David Malouf's much-loved 1982 novel, adapted into a libretto by Pierce Wilcox. The three singers initially represent the novel's three protagonists - Jim (baritone), Ashley (tenor), and Imogen (mezzo) - who are brought together by a shared fascination with birds, before being torn apart in the cataclysm of the First World War. In the later scenes, the opera on focuses Jim's nightmare journey through the horrors of the trenches (with numerous other soldiers played briefly by the tenor) and beyond, to a transcendent peace. And the end it is left to Imogen, back home in Queensland, to mourn for Jim and the countless others, while trying to rediscover meaning and the continuity of life. The instrumental ensemble is the same unusual septet featured in Stravinsky's World War 1 work The Soldier's Tale.

Work Details

Year: 2015

Instrumentation: Mezzo-soprano, tenor, baritone, clarinet/bass clarinet, bassoon, trumpet/cornet, trombone, percussion, violin, double bass.

Duration: 65 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

First performance: by Sydney Chamber Opera at Fly Away Peter (Carriageworks) on 2 May 2015

Awards & Prizes

Year Award Placing Awarded for/to
2016 Art Music Awards: Performance of the Year Finalist Sydney Chamber Opera
2016 Art Music Awards: Work of the Year: Vocal/Choral Finalist Elliott Gyger

Analysis

Resonate article: Insight: Fly Away Peter by Elliott Gyger

Resonate article: 2016 Art Music Awards finalists - comments by judging panels by Australian Music Centre

Performances of this work

23 Oct 2015: at Fly Away Peter (Fairfax Studio). Featuring Jack Symonds, Sydney Chamber Opera.

21 Oct 2015: at Fly Away Peter (Fairfax Studio). Featuring Sydney Chamber Opera, Jack Symonds.

9 May 2015: at Fly Away Peter (Carriageworks). Featuring Sydney Chamber Opera.

8 May 2015: at Fly Away Peter (Carriageworks). Featuring Sydney Chamber Opera.

6 May 2015: at Fly Away Peter (Carriageworks). Featuring Sydney Chamber Opera.

4 May 2015: at Fly Away Peter (Carriageworks). Featuring Sydney Chamber Opera.

2 May 2015: at Fly Away Peter (Carriageworks). Featuring Sydney Chamber Opera.

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