Pied butcherbird suite
by Hollis Taylor (2008)
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Library shelf no. 785.714/TAY 9 [Not for loan]
This four-movement suite was written for string students at the University of Newcastle. All movements derive from the duet recorded on Booth Road in Brookhill, near Townsville. The duet is based on four pitches, an F ascending a minor third to an Ab, then falling a tritone to a D and on down to a C. The four tones form a D minor seven, flat five chord (Dm7 b5). The tension created by this dominant shape is partially stabilised in the repetition. The limitation to four notes (at least structurally) is a challenge to both bird and human. When something this simple connects, it can be powerful.
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