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The John Clarke report : two songs for baritone and piano, one with optional SATB chorus

by Ralph Middenway (2009)

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The Australian Music Centre's catalogue does not include any recordings or sheet music of this work. This entry is for information purposes only.

Materials for this work may be lodged in our collection in the future. Until then, any enquiries should be made directly to the composer/sound artist or their agent.

Work Overview

The lyrics are as impeccably zany as one expects from John Clarke, and take the collective mickey out of the 'white-shoe brigade' of the time. The first song covers those who escaped into bankruptcy, most obviously Alan Bond. The second does the same for those who remained solvent.

Both songs have Gilbertian overtones; the second is a direct parody of 'I am the very model of a modern major-general'.

Work Details

Year: 2009

Instrumentation: Baritone solo, piano, optional SATB chorus.

Duration: 8 min.

Difficulty: Advanced — Although not very long, it's a 'big sing'; the piano part requires fluency and subtlety.

Commission note: Commissioned in 2008 for a 2009 Australia Day concert in St David's Cathedral Hobart, with funding support from the Hobart City Council

First performance: by Michael Lampard, Philippa Moyes — 26 Jan 09. St David's Cathedral, Hobart

The composer notes:
As the lyrics parody Gilbert, so the music parodies Sullivan, indirectly in the first song, directly in the second, retaining tonal qualities, but with ever-changing tonal centres. They were both very well received in performance.

Either song would do well as a vivacious encore piece. In the second song, the baritone would have an easier time of it if not required to sing in the choruses.

Performances of this work

26 Jan 09: St David's Cathedral, Hobart. Featuring Michael Lampard, Philippa Moyes.

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