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Shadow dances : for tenor saxophone and gamelan ensemble

by John Peterson (2015)

Shadow dances


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Shadow dances : for tenor saxophone and gamelan ensemble / music by John Peterson.

Library shelf no. 785.5619/PET 1 [Available for loan]

Work Overview

The idea for Shadow Dances came from the concept of the 'Shadow Play' that is performed in Bali and several other countries. My vision while composing the music was to create a dramatic structure within the work itself that might reflect an imaginary Shadow Play narrative and might also inspire possible dance movements. There was no intention on my part to try to make the music of Shadow Dances authentic in terms of Balinese culture, but in constructing the work in an episodic manner provided a dramatic contour for the music. There is also another meaning for my title of the work in that the solo tenor saxophone, for me, appears as a character in the imaginary Shadow Play and its voice thus adds narrative impact and musically performs the dance rituals and movements inspired by the play.

Work Details

Year: 2015

Instrumentation: Tenor saxophone and gamelan ensemble.

Duration: 7 min.

Difficulty: Medium

Written for: Suwitra Jaya (gamelan ensemble)

First performance: by Suwitra Jaya (gamelan ensemble), Sandy Evans, Manolete Mora — 7 May 15. Io Myers Theatre, University of New South Wales


Performances of this work

6 Jul 15: The 37th Pesta Kesenian Bali (37th Bali Arts Festival), Bali Taman Budaya (Bali Arts Centre), Ksirarnawa Building Concert Hall. Featuring Manolete Mora, Sandy Evans, Suwitra Jaya (gamelan ensemble).

2 Jul 15: for the Consulate General of Australia, the Consul-General’s Residence, Sanur, Bali. Featuring Suwitra Jaya (gamelan ensemble), Sandy Evans, Manolete Mora.

7 May 15: Io Myers Theatre, University of New South Wales. Featuring Suwitra Jaya (gamelan ensemble), Manolete Mora, Sandy Evans.

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