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Music (La musique) (duos: soprano, mezzo-soprano with chamber ensemble)

by Gordon Kerry

Audio Sample

Performance by Halcyon, Jason Noble, Geoffrey Gartner, William Jackson from the CD Kingfisher



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Kingfisher : songs for Halcyon.

Library shelf no. CD 2724 [Available for loan]

Work Details

Instrumentation: Soprano, mezzo-soprano, clarinet, vibraphone, cello.

Duration: 3 min.

First performance: by Halcyon at Kingfisher - songs for Halcyon (Sculpture Terrace, Museum of Contemporary Art) on 23 Oct 2013

This song is one of a collection of chamber works under the title Kingfisher, Songs for Halcyon. The songs were gifts from the composers to celebrate 15 years of music-making by Australia’s leading ensemble for vocal chamber music.

A fabled bird identified with the kingfisher, the halcyon had the power to calm the wind and the waves while it nested on the sea during the winter solstice. The composers took their inspiration from the word 'halcyon', each displaying their own unique voice in writing for singers and instruments. The 21 songs represent the cream of vocal composition in Australia and offer a lasting tribute to the relationships formed between Halcyon and the composers who have written for them over the years.


La musique, by Gordon Kerry

Delighted to celebrate the long life and substantial legacy of Halcyon, I composed a piece for Alison and Jenny and an ensemble that provides shimmering support for the two entwined vocal lines. I wanted to use an Australian poem with some connection to the ocean, so I chose John Kinsella’s version of Baudelaire’s La musique, which compares the many feelings evoked by music the changing moods of the sea, and which I set in the original French nearly 30 years ago. © Gordon Kerry


Performances of this work

29 Mar 2014: at Kingfisher - Songs for Halcyon (Music Workshop, Sydney Conservatorium of Music). Featuring Halcyon.

23 Oct 2013: at Kingfisher - songs for Halcyon (Sculpture Terrace, Museum of Contemporary Art). Featuring Halcyon.

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