CHAMBER MUSIC

Cellist David Pereira performed the world premiere of Fluctuating States of Calm, the title track of France’s CD. It is a meditative piece, where the lyricism and beauty belies the technical difficulty that only an artist of David ‘s calibre can execute.

Commissioned by Dr Jennifer Gall in 2017 as part of Listening to Canberra’s past, Lanyon Suite was composed for the Broadwood piano at Canberra’s historic Lanyon Homestead. The 3 movements reflect on the day-to-day life of a bygone country Australian era and have been performed at Canberra Museum and Art Gallery and Elizabeth Bay House, Sydney.

This 12-tone composition for solo piano develops a number of transpositions of a Prime row based on the Thelonius Monk tune “Epistrophy”. Composed to explore serialism, this work is intended for the young pianist/composer interested in the musical, mathematical and technical potential of 12-tone composition.

Written for snare drum and auxiliary percussion, this solo percussion piece was commissioned by Andrew Turner for his partner, Sarah Walker. The work explores patterns and thematic development through the use of a small battery of instruments which complement the snare drum.

Monism was inspired by Hindu philosophy, was composed in 1994 for Pal Eder, violin, and Gary France, marimba. It received its world premiere at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, Western Australia, in 1995. Monism can be heard on my instrumental CD: “Fluctuating States of Calm” and Gary France’s CD “Works for Percussion”.

Duo for Flute and Cello was first performed by Virginia Taylor and David Pereira at the Canberra International Chamber Music Festival in 2000. It is an exploration into 12-tone music and the potential of melody within such a rigid compositional technique.

Three Miniatures for Piano Trio was composed in 2002 as a set of three quirky pieces to explore the variety of timbres available to the genre. The first movement, “Stravinsky’s Book” was so named because it was a Stravinsky score that was first placed on the strings of the piano to dampen them. “Playing in the Shadows” was how Perth based Jazz musician John Pin described the playing of Jazz guitarist, Bill Frisell.  “You’re Sitting on My Thoughts” is such a great phrase…..important notes left behind on a seat during rehearsal…

What Goes Around Comes Around  was commissioned by Clarity Quartet in 1998.  Also found on the ensemble’s CD entitled “Second Door on the Left”, the work has been performed several times throughout Australia and abroad.

This early work was composed in 1993 after France graduated from WAAPA and before commencing Composition at the University of North Texas, USA.  Mentored by Ed Applebalm, France was encouraged to write authentically what she heard and wanted to hear.

Miss Mugwort was composed in 1996 and is dedicated to France’s first-born daughter, Antoinette (Nette) Elizabeth France.  Although the instrumentations is based on Schoenberg’s Pierro Lunaire, the soundscape of the work is in stark contrast to the great serial composer. With tongue-in-cheek, Miss Mugwort is a melodic, Jazz influenced chamber work rich in counterpoint and rhythmic complexity.  The work is named after a children’s story-book series written by Linda Britnell and illustrated by Joanna Walsh, which features a contrary fairy whose name is Nettie Mugwort.

Commissioned by Australia’s premier percussion ensemble, Synergy, 40Under40 was a unique
new-media art project consisting of a slew of newly commissioned audio-visual artworks exhibited at Yellow House Gallery, Potts Point from 8th -11th December, 2016. Sandra France’s 2X + 1 was amongst a number of other interesting works by composers including Elena Kats Chernin, Michael Gordon and Paul Stanhope, among others.

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