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Orange Resource


Ross Harris' five symphonies

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Commentary or analysis

Borrow/Hire:

To borrow or hire parts please email SOUNZ directly at info@sounz.org.nz. Please note that only library members in New Zealand and Australia can borrow or hire parts.

About

In 2013, Ross Harris completed his Symphony No. 5.  All five symphonies were written and premiered by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra since his residency with the orchestra in 2005.  Below is a brief introduction to each symphony, and a selection of Ross' other orchestral works.

Symphony No. 5  (2013)

Symphony No. 5, written for alto and orchestra, uses poems by Hungarian Poet Panni Palasti, based on her experiences as a child in Budapest in 1944.  Listen to an interview with Panni Palasti here, and also read an article that was featured in the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra's "Phil News" here.

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/21262

 



Symphony No. 4 - To the memory of Mahinarangi Tocker (2011)

Symphony No. 4 is dedicated to the memory of singer, composer and poet Mahinarangi Tocker, who died in tragic circumstances three years ago. The symphony has five sections linked by bell sounds that ’ring the changes’. Each section quotes a fragment of one of Mahinarangi’s songs and is also, in the score, headed by one or two lines of her poetry.

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/20563

Symphony No. 3  (2008)

Ross writes: "The initial musical thoughts for Symphony No. 3 came from two related sources of inspiration – the paintings of Marc Chagall and Klezmer music. I had been playing accordion in a klezmer band in Wellington for a year or so before starting the work. I was intrigued by the genre and began writing klezmer influenced tunes for the band to play."  Symphony No. 3 won the SOUNZ Contemporary Award in 2009.

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/18754

 Symphonies Nos. 2 and 3
Released by Naxos in 2012

Picture
Available to purchase here.

Symphony No. 2  (2006)

Written for mezzo-soprano and orchestra, with words by Vincent O'Sullivan, Symphony No. 2 is a setting of poems on the subject of New Zealand soldiers shot for desertion in World War One.  Both Symphony No. 2 and Symphony No. 3 were recorded by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, and released by Naxos in 2012, featuring soprano Madeleine Pierard.  Symphony No. 2 won the SOUNZ Contemporary Award in 2006.

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/17631

Symphony No. 1 (2005)

Ross Harris' first symphony, written during his residency with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra in 2005.  This symphony birthed a special relationship between the orchestra and composer, who have worked together to present all five of Ross' symphonies! 

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/11787

Ross Harris has also written many other works for the orchestra, here is a selection:


“The Hills of Time”, written in 1980 for the St. Matthews Chamber Orchestra.  Listen to the full-length recording below, made available through the NZSO-SOUNZ-RNZC Recordings project.

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/11757




“Labyrinth for Tuba and Orchestra”, commissioned by and written for the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra with tuba soloist Andrew Jarvis.  The recording below, made available through the Resound project, receives an introduction by Kenneth Young here.

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/17195




“...the beginning of a new story...”, commissioned by the Adam Foundation for the 60th birthday of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, and in celebration of Verna Adam's 75th birthday.  The recording below, made available through the Resound project, receives an introduction by Kenneth Young here.

View listing on SOUNZ Online: http://sounz.org.nz/works/show/13681



Author note

Compiled by Hayden Sinclair, Collection Coordinator for SOUNZ