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Poems of a bright moon : for flute/alto flute, clarinet, piano

by Maria Grenfell (2000)

Score Sample

View a sample of the score of this work

Audio Sample

From the CD Instrumental music

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Instrumental music


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Instrumental music : for ensembles.

Library shelf no. CD 1170 [Available for loan]

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Work Overview

Poems of a Bright Moon was inspired by the Hsiang-Yang Songs of Li Po, an 8th-century Chinese poet of the T'ang Dynasty (ca.618-906 A.D.). On a visit to New Mexico in the United States, the discovery of the poet William Carlos Williams and the art work of Georgia O'Keeffe led to the poetry of Li Po, which conjures up visions of mountains and rivers, also very much part of the New Mexico landscape. Li Po was something of a
mischievous travelling minstrel and liked to indulge in the drink. A legend says that "while out drunk in a boat, he fell into a river and drowned trying to embrace the moon." The moon appears in over a third of his poems, and the opportunity to combine Li Po's images of moonlight with the rich dark tones of the alto flute was irresistible. The individual titles of the movements of this piece come directly from the poems, and the music attempts to evoke the spirit of the titles: "Hsien mountain rises above emerald Han river," "On a moonlit night, a recluse plays his pale white ch'in" and "A pure tenthousand-mile wind arrives."

Work Details

Year: 2000

Instrumentation: Flute/alto flute, clarinet in B flat, piano.

Duration: 11 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

Contents note: I. Hsien mountain rises above emerald Han river -- II. On a moonlit night, a recluse plays his pale white ch'in -- III. A pure ten-thousand-mile wind arrives.

Commission note: Commissioned by Ethos trio with funds provided by Creative New Zealand.

First performance: by Ethos trio — 13 Aug 00. Ilott Concert Chamber, Wellington, N.Z.

Performances of this work

9 Oct 2018: at Australia Ensemble (Tyree Room, John Niland Scientia Building, UNSW). Featuring Australia Ensemble.

16 Oct 2012: at Australia Ensemble @UNSW Lunch hour concert (Leighton Hall). Featuring Australia Ensemble.

2 May 2009: at Australian Chamber Ensemble (Conservatorium Recital Hall (Hobart)). Featuring Janine Hanharan, Brigid Burke, Lachlan Redd.

13 Aug 00: Ilott Concert Chamber, Wellington, N.Z.. Featuring Ethos trio.

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