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Anthea's garden : for solo percussion

by Katherine Rawlings (2003)

Score Sample

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This sample is from the Duos: 2 Percussion version of this work

Audio Sample

From the CD Remembering kindness

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Remembering kindness


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Anthea's garden


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Anthea's garden : for percussion duo / Katherine Rawlings.

Version: This product features the Duos: 2 Percussion version of this work

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Work Overview

For me, this piece was about conveying a children's story through the use of music and images, rather than words. This work includes eight drawings that may be projected onto a screan or shown in a program format.

It conveys the story of a little girl asleep on a rug next to her cat and her much loved sunflower pot plant. When the girl awakes she has shrunk, the cat has disappeared, and the sunflower has sprouted legs and is running away. We witness the girl chasing the sunflower and then suddenly running away from her giant cat. In her travels she discovers in her garden; two fairies dancing, and later, a gathering of large insects discover her. The piece concludes in the same way as it began. The little girl is sleeping as she was in the beginning, representing that she had in fact been asleep all this time, and dreaming.

— Katherine Rawlings

Work Details

Year: 2003

Duration: 15 min.

Contents note: Asleep -- Runaway pot plant -- The fairy dance -- Insects -- Asleep II.

Dedication note: Dedicated to Anthea McKie

Commission note: Commissioned by Carmen Chan.

First performance: by Carmen Chan — 12 Jun 03. Melba Hall, Faculty of Music, University of Melbourne

The sheet music for solo percussion and multimedia was never published and appeared in its entirety in concert only once. As it was originally written for a Master's recital, the music was intentionally quite technically difficult to play. Over ten years after its original conception, Carmen suggested that I arrange the piece for percussion duo to ease its level of difficulty and to make it more widely accessible. I immediately embraced this idea, however the inclusion of another player opened up a range of musical possibilities that were previously impractical. For this reason, this new percussion duo version, while referring closely to the 2003 edition, has been significantly rewritten. This edition was completed in May and recorded in July 2014 by Collision Theory (Arwen Johnston and Amy Valent Curlis).

Anthea's Garden is a requiem for Anthea McKie (1980 - 2003): a close school friend and fellow creative artist. Anthea had wanted to illustrate children's books and I had intended to ask her to illustrate the pictures for this work, when I learned of her unexpected passing. Instead, the themes explored in the musical content became a reflection of my memory of Anthea herself. Her interests, and things that she loved, inspired the creation of Anthea's Garden. Commissioned by Carmen Chan for her Master's recital entitled "Children's Games", Anthea's Garden was originally written for solo percussion and multimedia (completed May 2003), illustrated by Kelly Hobbs and first performed by Carmen on the 12th of June 2003.

Meetings with Author Ailsa Wild and illustrator Aviva Reed are underway to produce this music as a children's book that can be performed live in concert. The book launch and live performance of Anthea's Garden is scheduled to take place in October 2015.


Resonate article: Insight: Anthea's Garden by Katherine Rawlings

Performances of this work

31 Oct 2015: at Anthea's Garden (La Mama Courthouse). Featuring Collision Theory.

12 Jun 03: Melba Hall, Faculty of Music, University of Melbourne. Featuring Carmen Chan.

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