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Singing Trees (string orchestra with multiple soloists)

by Elena Kats-Chernin (2016)

Singing Trees


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Singing Trees / Elena Kats-Chernin.

Library shelf no. 784.7/KAT 4 [Available for loan]

Work Overview

For this unusual commission by Bruce and Jenny Lane for the Australian Chamber Orchestra, I was asked to create specific parts for the 4 soloists playing beautiful rare old instruments. In wanting to honour these special 'soldiers' of music (Guarneri Violin, Stradivarius Violin, Maggini Viola and da Salo Double Bass), I thought about some of the different types of wood that are used in instrument making and how they all have their own particular advantages, originalities and strengths. The woods I chose were maple, ebony, willow, spruce. No string instrument can exist without using at least some of these materials.
A question I was asking myself was, would the wood retain some of the spirit and memory of where it has been, what it has heard, and what it has played in its life? The heart of that idea led me to imagine an inner life and world for these magnificent instruments and to offer my own musings on what some of those memories might be if they did happen. The work is in four movements and each is dedicated to one wood. The four instruments (dedicatees) feature in each

Work Details

Year: 2016

Instrumentation: 2 solo violins, solo viola, solo double bass, violins, violas, celli.

Contents note: 1. Maple -- 2. Ebony -- 3. Willow -- 4. Spruce.

Commission note: Commissioned by Jenny Lane, Bruce Lane for performance by Australian Chamber Orchestra.

First performance: by Australian Chamber Orchestra at Gut Strings - Tognetti & ACO soloists: Kats-Chernin (Sydney Opera House, Concert Hall) on 16 Oct 2016

Performances of this work

16 Oct 2016: at Gut Strings - Tognetti & ACO soloists: Kats-Chernin (Sydney Opera House, Concert Hall). Featuring Australian Chamber Orchestra.

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