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Reverse : for solo flute

by Stephen Adams (2009)

Selected products featuring this work — Display all products (1 more)

Selected works by AMC represented artists, vol 11.


This item is not commercially available from the Australian Music Centre. We regret that we cannot offer it for sale.


Selected works by AMC represented artists, vol 11.

Version: This product features the Duos: Flute, synthesizer version of this work

Library shelf no. CD 2237 [Available for loan]



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Reverse : for solo flute / Stephen Adams.

Library shelf no. 788.32/ADA 1 [Available for loan]

Display all products featuring this work (1 more)  

Work Overview

The flute is the instrument I studied as a teenager. At the request of various flute-players, I've made numerous failed attempts over the years to write a convincing solo flute piece. This work was first written for flute and the late 1970s Korg MS-20 analogue synthesizer. When after its premiere in Brisbane, flutist Janet McKay prepared to head off on a concert tour of America, I re-wrote the piece for her to perform without me and my synthesizer, thus finally tricking myself into completing a solo flute piece.

The stark gestural language owes something to my memories of the first Australian performances of Japanese Noh Drama back in 1984 at the University of Sydney in which I participated as one of the two drummers. This approach was in part prompted by the abrupt nature of the beginnings and endings of the synthesizer tones as triggered by the flute-player in the flute and synth version. Thus a ghost of the synth remains imprinted on the flute's abrupt gestures, as well as the 'ghost-tones' of the flute-player's voice.

Work Details

Year: 2009

Instrumentation: Solo flute with vocalisation.

Duration: 7 min.

Difficulty: Advanced — extreme registers, extensive simultaneous vocalising, multiphonics

Dedication note: Dedicated to Janet McKay

Written for: Janet McKay

Commission note: Written for flautist Janet McKay to enable her to take Reverse (previously for flute and synthesizer) on her solo tour of the United States

First performance: by Janet McKay — 22 Mar 09. The Wulf, Los Angeles, USA


Resonate article: Those Vanished Hands - Janet McKay by Sarah Collins

Resonate article: Solo Perspective concerts 1&2 by Geoffrey Gartner

Performances of this work

9 Aug 09: New Music Network Mini-series: 'Solo Perspectives 1', Recital Hall East, Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Featuring Janet McKay.

22 Mar 09: The Wulf, Los Angeles, USA. Featuring Janet McKay.

15 Mar 2009: at Those Vanished Hands (Queensland College of Art - Griffith University). Featuring Janet McKay, Stephen Adams.

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