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Advice To A Girl : for soprano or mezzo soprano with piano trio

by Anne Cawrse (2020, this version: 2021)

Score Sample

View a sample of the score of this work

Audio Sample

Performance by Bethany Hill, Cameron Hill, Helen Ayres, Martin Alexander, Ewen Bramble from the CD Advice to a girl

This sample is of the Mezzo-Soprano with string quartet version of this work

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Advice to a girl


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Advice to a girl / Anne Cawrse.

Version: This product features the Mezzo-Soprano with string quartet version of this work

Library shelf no. CD 3259 [Available for loan]

Display all products featuring this work (4 more)  

Work Overview

I became aware of the poem Advice To A Girl by Sara Teasdale in a media misquote, which said I had set these words in another musical work of mine, Flame and Shadow (they got the Teasdale bit right, but chose the wrong poem!) Upon reading the poem, it struck me as the perfect text to use for a work that wanted to lay claim to a woman's rightful desire to create. I set it aside until the right opportunity came about- that opportunity was a new work to be included on my debut album of chamber music for voice and strings.

The music, like the text, is gentle but confident; simple, but direct. Teasdale's honest and unpretentious lyricism is reflected in the crystalline clarity of the music, beginning with a small waver of insecurity, and finishing with a new-found assuredness. It is a poem that I still struggle to articulate a meaning for, but which affects me deeply every time I hear it: what better reason, then, to set it to music, and to let the music deliver the true meaning of the words?

Work Details

Year: 2020, this version: 2021

Instrumentation: Soprano or mezzo-soprano, violin, cello, piano.

Duration: 6 min.

Difficulty: Medium

Commission note: This arrangement made for 'Domestic Voices', part of 'She Speaks' (June 2021), presented by the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and the Elder Conservatorium of Music

First performance: by Cheryl Pickering, Seraphim Trio — 19 Jun 21. 'Domestic Voices', Elder Hall, Adelaide

Performances of this work

19 Jun 21: 'Domestic Voices', Elder Hall, Adelaide. Featuring Cheryl Pickering, Seraphim Trio.

11 Oct 2020: at Music at the Top House (Coriole Vineyard). Featuring Cameron Hill, Bethany Hill, Ewen Bramble, Martin Alexander, Helen Ayres.

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