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Work

Sacred Sky : String Quartet no. 3

by Nigel Westlake (2019)

Also known as: String quartet No. 3

Score Sample

View a sample of the score of this work

Audio Sample

Performance by Australian String Quartet from the CD Sacred Sky

Sacred Sky

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Score

Sacred Sky : String Quartet No. 3 / Nigel Westlake.

Library shelf no. 785.714/WES 4 [On loan, due 11/12/20]

Work Overview

Sacred Sky is dedicated to the memory of my sister Kate, who lost her battle with cancer early in 2018.

An actor, singer, visual artist, & extraordinary event producer, Kate was a beautiful & totally unique individual on many levels. As siblings we shared a very close bond and were great mates right to the end.

I have endeavoured to invoke Kate's spirit, in the hope of imbuing the music with themes of beauty, energy, soulfulness, & transcendence. Inevitably the fingerprints of grief and sadness permeate the musical narrative at times, but there is also an overarching sense of joy and optimism. I tried to write a piece that Kate would have loved to hear.

The titles of each movement are taken from four of Kate's seascape paintings, a collection of visual meditations based on unnamed locations, somewhere on the eastern seaboard of Australia.

The pictures are studies in the reflection, scattering and radiance of light and shadow, and they inhabit a rich and evocative emotional terrain.

I am very grateful to Dale, Sharon, Francesca and Stephen from the Australian String Quartet for so willingly agreeing to be a part of this journey and also to Carl Wood and Don and Veronica Aldridge for their very generous sponsorship of the work.

Work Details

Year: 2019

Instrumentation: 2 violins, viola, cello.

Duration: 20 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

Contents note: I – Sacred Sky -- II – Where the Spirit Dances by the Edge of the Sea -- III – The Turning Tide -- IV – The Journey Begins.

Written for: Australian String Quartet

Commission note: Commissioned by Australian String Quartet.. Commissioned with generous support from Carl Wood and Don and Veronica Aldridge

First performance: by Australian String Quartet at ASQ; Ives, Westlake, Debussy (City Recital Hall) on 4 Sep 2019

Awards & Prizes

Year Award Placing Awarded for/to
2020 Albert H Maggs Composition Award First Prize Nigel Westlake

Performances of this work

20 Sep 2019: at ASQ; Ives, Westlake, Debussy (Melbourne Recital Centre, Elisabeth Murdoch Hall). Featuring Australian String Quartet.

18 Sep 2019: at ASQ; Ives, Westlake, Debussy (Government House Ballroom, Perth). Featuring Australian String Quartet.

17 Sep 2019: at ASQ; Ives, Westlake, Debussy (Conservatorium Theatre, Brisbane). Featuring Australian String Quartet.

9 Sep 2019: at ASQ; Ives, Westlake, Debussy (Adelaide Town Hall). Featuring Australian String Quartet.

8 Sep 2019: at ASQ; Ives, Westlake, Debussy (Gandel Hall, National Gallery of Australia). Featuring Australian String Quartet.

4 Sep 2019: at ASQ; Ives, Westlake, Debussy (City Recital Hall). Featuring Australian String Quartet.

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