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String quartet no. 11 : (Jabiru dreaming) : for string quartet

by Peter Sculthorpe (1990)

Also known as: Jabiru dreaming

Score Sample

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Audio Sample

Performance by Goldner String Quartet from the CD string quartets. Vol. 2

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string quartets. Vol. 2


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The string quartets. Vol. 2 / Peter Sculthorpe.

Library shelf no. CD 457 [Available for loan]

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Work Overview

The living, indigenous musics of Kakadu National Park, in the north of Australia, and of Torres Strait and beyond, have been a part of my musical language since the late 'eighties. The incorporation is particularly evident in this quartet. Furthermore, the second movement is based upon an Aboriginal chant transcribed by a member of the Baudin exploratory expedition in 1802. This is the first such music committed to Western notation. My eleventh string quartet, then, is in two movements. The first, marked Deciso, contains rhythmic patterns found in the indigenous music of the Kakadu area. Some of these patterns also suggest the gait of the jabiru, a species of stork. While both movements employ similar subsidiary material, the second movement, marked Estatico is dominated by the chant, first stated by the cello in its original form. This movement is also a joyful one: it stems from my belief that Australia is one of the few places on earth where one may write straightforward, happy music. The subtitle, Jabiru Dreaming takes its name from a rock formation in the National Park. This rock is regarded as sacred, but there is nothing forbidding about it: on the contrary, it seems to beckon and welcome. Peter Sculthorpe

Work Details

Year: 1990

Instrumentation: 2 violins, viola, cello, optional didjeridu.

Duration: 15 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

Contents note: In 2 movements.

Dedication note: Dedicated to Kronos Quartet

Written for: Kronos Quartet

Commission note: Commissioned by Musica Viva Australia.

First performance: by Kronos Quartet — 10 Mar 90. Adelaide Festival of the Arts


Resonate article: Synergy and Grainger Quartet by Australian Music Centre


Performances of this work

6 Apr 2014: at Tonic String Quartet in Leicchardt (All Souls Anglican Church, Leichhardt). Featuring Tonic String Quartet.

30 Mar 2014: at Tonic String Quartet in Picton (Wollondilly Shire Hall). Featuring Tonic String Quartet.

18 Mar 2014: at Goldner Quartet (City Recital Hall Angel Place). Featuring Goldner String Quartet.

11 Aug 2012: at Musica Viva @ The Standard (The Standard). Featuring Enigma Quartet.

9 Jun 2012: at Enigma Quartet (Pearl Beach Memorial Hall). Featuring Enigma Quartet.

Apr 12: Trackdown Studios, Sydney. Featuring Goldner String Quartet.

15 Mar 2012: at Australian String Quartet (City Recital Hall Angel Place). Featuring Australian String Quartet, Daniel de Borah.

14 Mar 2012: at Australian String Quartet (Melbourne Recital Centre). Featuring Australian String Quartet, Daniel de Borah.

12 Mar 2012: at Australian String Quartet (Perth Concert Hall). Featuring Australian String Quartet, Daniel de Borah.

8 Mar 2012: at Australian String Quartet (Conservatorium Theatre, Brisbane). Featuring Australian String Quartet, Daniel de Borah.

7 Mar 2012: at Australian String Quartet (Adelaide Town Hall). Featuring Daniel de Borah, Australian String Quartet.

7 Mar 2012: at ASQ & Daniel de Borah (Adelaide Town Hall). Featuring Australian String Quartet.

31 Jul 2010: at Governor's Gala Concert (Townsville Civic Theatre). Featuring William Barton, Synergy Percussion.

10 May 2009: at Goldner String Quartet Mother's Day Concert (Elisabeth Murdoch Hall). Featuring Goldner String Quartet.

3 May 2009: at Peter Sculthorpe - An 80th birthday tribute (Kangaroo Valley Golf & Country Resort). Featuring William Barton, Goldner String Quartet.

10 Mar 90: Adelaide Festival of the Arts. Featuring Kronos Quartet.

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