Your cart

Total
NZD
Shipping and discount codes are added at checkout.

Red Contributor


Helen Bowater

Composer

Small image
Born: 1952

Biography

Helen Bowater graduated BMus(Hons) in music history and ethnomusicology from Victoria University of Wellington in 1982. She later studied composition with Jack Body and electroacoustic music with Ross Harris. She has been active in various choirs and ensembles as a singer, pianist and violinist, also in the Victoria University Gamelan Padhang Moncar and in rock bands pHonk and the Extra Virgin Orchestra. Following residencies at the Nelson School of Music in 1992 and at Otago University as Mozart Fellow in 1993, she was appointed Composer-in-Residence with the Auckland Philharmonia in 1994.

In 1998 she attended June in Buffalo composition summer school and subsequently two Festivals of New Zealand music in Scotland where the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (BBCSSO) played her gamelan-influenced New Year Fanfare and also River of Ocean. The Hebrides Ensemble performed Banshee, the latter two works commissioned by Edinburgh Contemporary Arts Trust for the occasion.

Many of Helen’s solo, ensemble and orchestral works have been performed in concert and on radio, and several published. Works include installation and collaboration with sculptor, Kazu Nakagawa and brother David Bowater; Urwachst, commissioned and performed by Auckland Philharmonia in 2003; commissioned works from Stroma and 175 East in 2005; performance and recording of New Year Fanfare by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra during the Asia Pacific Music Festival 2006; a string quartet This desperate edge of now performed in Holland 2008.

In 2008-2009 while she was Creative NZ/Jack C. Richards Composer in Residence at the New Zealand School of Music, Victoria University of Wellington, she wrote a variety of pieces for solo and ensemble including Nekhbet for solo piano written for pianist Wojciech Wisniewski (performed in Australia and New Zealand) and Sun Wu Kong “Monkey” for chinese sheng, Gamelan Padhang Moncar, singer, and the New Zealand String Quartet.

Helen participated in a contemporary composition festival and conference at ISI, Jogya, Indonesia in 2008 and a festival of NZ music in Beijing in 2010.

Most recent compositions include an ensemble piece beneath the crumpled stars, setting poems by Gregory O’Brien, for the Barefoot Musicians of Budapest, in the east, to the right… for female choir, harp and 3 megaphones commissioned by Baroque Voices of Wellington, the electroacoustic sound component of a sound sculpture Crossed Wires for headland Sculpture on the Gulf, 2015 (now installed at Connell’s Bay Sculpture Park, Waiheke Island) and the sound component of Kazu Nakagawa's sculpture Carving Water Painting Voice, hSOTG 2017.

Helen was awarded the University of Otago, Wallace Residency at the Pah Homestead Jan-April, 2016 where she created a work White Kingdom for ACE Brass and a solo trumpet piece for performer Huw Dann - Seruan (a call, invocation) in memoriam Jack Body.


Composed (60)

A Midsummer Night's Dream

incidental music for chamber ensemble, 9m


A Wild Sea for the Crossing

for female singer (mezzo-soprano or soprano) and piano, 10m


Atsinganos

for solo violin, 5m


Banshee

for two violins, cello and piano, 11m 50s


beneath the crumpled stars

for mezzo-soprano, clarinet, guitar and cello, 12m


Black Rain

for soprano and cello, 5m


Blue Shift

for solo piano, 3m 30s


Bowater's Box

electroacoustic installation, 10m


Chameleon

for orchestra, 24m


Cottleston Pie

for piano, 5m


Crossed Wires

electroacoustic


Dancing to my Tune

for SATB choir with two violins, 10m


declination 0 (zero)

for mixed chamber sextet, 10m


Flash Jack

multimedia work for tape and two performers, co-composed with David Bowater, 5m


Ftatsu no umi

for vocal octet


Gwiffert's Jig

for organ, 6m


He does not come

for soprano and ensemble, 8m


Hihi

for harp, 6m


Hoshi no hayashi ("forest of stars")

for solo soprano or solo alto voice, 5m 20s


Hu

for recorder quartet, recorder band, shakuhachi and hue puru hau


in the east, to the right...

for 4 sopranos, 2 altos, harp and 3 megaphones, 6m 30s


In the Queen's Gardens

for soprano and chamber ensemble, 9m


Ixion's Wheel

for clarinet and piano, 14m


Lautari

for solo violin


Little Bit

for piano, 4m


Lumen

for chamber ensemble, 13m


Magma

for orchestra, 12m


Makara - late winter

for mezzo-soprano and piano, 9m


Naja Naja Naja

for 2 female singers and instrumental septet, 10m


Nekhbet

for piano


New Year Fanfare

for orchestra, 4m 30s


On Your Marks

for two pianos, 4m


Once

for female voice and piano, 4m


Raindance

for soprano and ensemble, 8m


Rangitoto

for piano, 8m 30s


River of Ocean

for orchestra, 15m


sama sama

for flute, viola and harp, 9m


Skeleton Souvenirs

for two sopranos and percussion, 12m


Songs of Mourning

for baritone and string quartet, 9m


Stay Awake Ananda

for 5 percussionists and 2 male speakers, 6m


Sun Wu Kong "Monkey"

central Javanese gamelan (including frog toys), string quartet, Chinese sheng, rebab player, singer(s) - male or female, 6m 30s


Svaha

for soprano, clarinet, cello and piano


Swansong

for solo cello, 8m


Tembang matjapat

for gamelan, string orchestra, marimba, tam-tam and 10 singers (gerongan), 11m


Temple

for flute/alto flute and piano, 10m


The Bodhi Tree

for string quartet, 9m


The Chafing of the Stump

for tape, soprano saxophone, cello (tempered electronically) and solo dancer, 25m


The Frivolous Cake

for mezzo-soprano, flute, clarinet, soprano saxophone, fretless bass, cello and percussion, 15m


the ghost of oedipus

for piano, 5m 45s


The Loud Water Rushes

for chamber sextet, 10m


The Non-Singing Seats

for violin, viola and narrator, 6m 10s


this desperate edge of now

for string quartet, 11m


Urwachst

for orchestra, 5m


Violin Concerto for 10 players

for chamber ensemble, 21m


Wire Dogs

for piano, 4m 30s


Witch's Mine

electroacoustic, 9m


You Spotted Snakes

for voice and piano, 3m


Zingaro

for solo violin, 5m


¡AY!

for solo cello, 8m