For high voice, clarinet in B flat and piano, the five songs are settings of New Zealand poems that evoke poignant memories of past experiences. They are of beyond diploma difficulty for the three performers.
The poem is a reflection of the transient nature of love and life. The gamelan, being an intergral part of a traditional which sees life as cyclic, maybe offers a balance. I have endeavoured to express this polarity by using traditional materials in non-traditional ways.
I. Preludio is based on the phrase heard at the start of the piece; elaborated with triadic harmonies. II. Variazioni is a simple intervallic theme with variations. Composed for guitarist Kazuhito Yamashita, who requested a piece for solo guitar. He first performed the work at Kirishima, Kyushu in February, 1996.
‘Anake’ – Maori for alone – is a set of three pieces. The first contrasts fragmentary ideas with slower wide-ranging melodic lines. These ideas are extended into a shimmering virtuosic diversion in the second piece, and the third turns the slower music into a desolate lament. This third piece was written with a line from Federico Garcia Lorca’s lament for the bullfighter Ignacio Sanchez Mejias in mind: ‘Bones and flutes sound in his ears’.