The Passing of a Black Star : tribute to David Bowie
by Marian Budos (2016)
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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.
It is listed in our catalogue because an event featuring a performance of this work was included in our calendar of Australian music. Details of this performance are listed below.
When David Bowie died just two days after releasing his final album Blackstar, I could not believe the news.
A few days later, and after listening to the album Blackstar on a loop, I returned to my new commission for the New Zealand Guitar Quartet. It became clear to me that the only piece of music I was going to be able to write was a tribute to David Bowie. On one of my runs in the hills just before dark, I thought of the title, while looking at the rising stars, imagining the Blackstar himself 'passing' among all the other stars.
My own music is interwoven with musical quotations and ideas from three of David Bowie's final album's tracks: Blackstar, Lazarus and I Can't Give Everything Away. Some are more obvious, like the I am a Blackstar motif repeated about a dozen times throughout the piece, and some are hidden in the actual score, like the lyrics to a quasi David Bowie melody, where the text tells the story of the music.
The full programme notes at the beginning of the score explain most of my tributes to David Bowie's work, but I still left a few unexplained 'mysteries' in the work for those, who might want to 'dig deeper'.
(from NZGQ's The Passing of a Black Star (2017) album sleeve notes
Instrumentation: 4 guitars.
Duration: 10 min.
Difficulty: Advanced — guitars 1 and 2 are virtuosic at times, guitars 3 and 4 can be managed by students of approximately AMEB 6/7+ level
Commission note: Commissioned by New Zealand Guitar Quartet.
Performances of this work
18 Dec 16: Ouspar, China. Featuring New Zealand Guitar Quartet.
17 Dec 16: UCCA, 798 Art Zone, China. Featuring New Zealand Guitar Quartet.
17 Dec 16: La Plantation, Shunyi, China. Featuring New Zealand Guitar Quartet.
15 Dec 16: Centennial Hall, Peking University, China. Featuring New Zealand Guitar Quartet.
14 Dec 16: The Sunrise Concert Hall BUAA, China. Featuring New Zealand Guitar Quartet.
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