White ghost dancing : for orchestra
by Ross Edwards (1999)
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There are recorded instances of Aboriginal People mistaking early
Europeans in Australia for the ghosts of their ancestors, since
ghosts were believed to be light-coloured.
As I composed White Ghost Dancing, the concept of a white ghost came to symbolise non-indigenous Australia's innate Aboriginality - its capacity to transform and heal itself through spiritual connectedness with the earth.
I believe that music, which has enormous therapeutic properties and, for me, a close relationship with ritual - and especially dance - is destined to make an important contribution to this transformation and healing, hence the title.
Typical of my maninya (dance/chant pieces), White Ghost Dancing is a compact mosaic of unconsciously processed shapes and patterns from the natural world: fragments of birdsong, insect and frog rhythms, as well as fleeting references to other works of mine and hinted fusions of Aboriginal and Gregorian chant.
Instrumentation: 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, harp, strings.
Duration: 8 min.
Difficulty: Medium — Advanced student or professional.
Dedication note: Dedicated to David Porcelijn
Program note: Ross Edwards' "White ghost dancing"
by Ross Edwards
Source: the score of this work
Composer profile – Ross Edwards, A Natural Way
by G.K. Williams
Source: Published by Symphony Services
Performances of this work
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