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A Bridge Across Time : for mandolin orchestra

by Stephen Lalor (2022)

Work Overview

The Sydney Mandolin Orchestra (SMO) was founded by Phil Skinner in 1932 - coincidentally the same year as the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, which features prominently on the SMO logo. Like many other young (and not so young) players of mandolin, guitar and related instruments in Sydney since that time, Stephen Lalor played with the SMO as a child - with a very old but still sprightly Phil Skinner conducting.

When commissioned to compose a piece for the orchestra's 90th Anniversary celebrations, Stephen decided to incorporate the Harbour Bridge into the title, and to weave into the piece references to music he recalled playing with the orchestra. Thus, in the introductory section there is an allusion to the Serenade from Mozart's opera 'Don Giovanni', followed soon after by a hint of 'Come Back to Sorrento'. Later in the piece, the lower instruments make an oblique reference to 'Recuerdos de l'Alhambra'.

A Bridge Across Time also incorporates a section in which 2 mandolinists, mandola and guitar engage in extended, virtuosic flourishes 'à la Flamenco'.

Work Details

Year: 2022

Instrumentation: 2 Mandolins, mandola, guitar, mandocello (optional), double bass.

Duration: 5 min.

Difficulty: Medium

Commission note: Commissioned by Sydney Mandolin Orchestra.. Commissioned by The Sydney Mandolin Orchestra for its 90th Anniversary Concert 2022

First performance: by Sydney Mandolin Orchestra at Sydney Mandolin Orchestra 90th Anniversary (Pier 2/3) on 23 Oct 2022

Performances of this work

7 May 2023: at Sydney Mandolin Orchestra Presents 'Mosaic' (Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre). Featuring Sydney Mandolin Orchestra.

23 Oct 2022: at Sydney Mandolin Orchestra 90th Anniversary (Pier 2/3). Featuring Sydney Mandolin Orchestra.

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