|Judith Clark, much loved teacher whose influence reached generations of
New Zealand pianists, passed away in February 2014. One of her protégés,
Nicola Melville, is now Associate Professor at Minnesota's Carleton
Nicola returned to New Zealand for the 2015 Adam Chamber Music Festival, performing a concert that included commissions written in memory of Judith by Eve de Castro-Robinson, Ross Harris, and Gareth Farr. The commissions were funded by Creative New Zealand.
Whenever I ran into Judith over the years at some music event or other
in Wellington, I was touched by the way her face would light up. Our
exchanges were always light and cheery but I was struck by the deep
wisdom etched on that marvellous face and the richness of her contralto
tone. The little tribute I’ve written is marked Free, capricious,
whimsical and comprises a series of conversational gestures, like a chat
Arts laureate Ross Harris is one of New Zealand’s leading composers.
He has written more than two hundred compositions including opera,
symphonic music, chamber music, klezmer and electronic music. He has won
the prestigious SOUNZ Contemporary Award more times than any other New Zealand composer.
|Below is an introduction to the work by Ross Harris|
|Gareth Farr (b.1968) began his studies in composition and percussion
performance at the University of Auckland. The experience of hearing a
visiting gamelan orchestra prompted his return to Wellington to attend
Victoria University, where the characteristic rhythms and textures of
the Indonesian gamelan rapidly became hallmarks of his own composition.
Farr continued with postgraduate study in composition and percussion at
the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, where his teachers
included Samuel Adler and Christopher Rouse. In 1993, at the age of 25, Farr was appointed composer-in-residence by
Chamber Music New Zealand, the youngest-ever composer to hold that
Since then, his music has been heard at, or especially commissioned for high-profile events including the 50th anniversary of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (the 25-minute From the Depths Sound the Great Sea Gongs), the opening of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa (Te Papa, for orchestra with soprano, tenor and kaikaranga (indigenous New Zealand Maori chant), a work hailed as ‘music with a powerful and moving impact that transcends idiom and individual taste’), and the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney (Hikoi, a concerto for percussionist Evelyn Glennie and the NZSO).
| Below is a tribute to Judith Clark from Christine Argyle|