Five movements: Virginia (five hundred pounds and a room of one's own); Olivia (Spinners and weavers); Robin (White irises); Fanny Buss; Katherine ('But isn't it extraordinary that under his sweet, joyful, little singing it was just this - sadness? - Ah, what is it? - that I heard?) and Epilogue (A joining of women's hands)
Five Vignettes of Women was commissioned in December 1987 by Christchurch flautist, Rebecca Steel, and was first performed by her in April 1988 with a women’s choir conducted by the composer. Each work has a subtitle and the texts are taken from the writings of the subject of each song: Virginia Woolf, Olivia Spencer-Brown, Robin Hyde, Fanny Buss and Katherine Mansfield.
Text by Virginia Woolf; Olivia Spencer-Brown; Robin Hyde; Fanny Buss; Katherine Mansfield (from 'The Canary')