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Work

2012
Duration:
11' 00"
Instrumentation:
Piano, Violin, Cello
Contents:

I. prologue
II. (d)rag
III. interlude
IV. a spanner
V. tumbledry
VI. gas / sisyphus
VII. tic
VIII. anglegrinder
IX. chain
X. scaffold

Samples

application/pdf,347k Score (347k) pages 3-7, 16-24© Alex Taylor
audio/mp3,493k Recording (493k) 0'00"-0'42"© Rattle Records
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External Media on Demand

Programme Note

burlesques mécaniques is a rather extroverted collection of grotesque miniatures whose characters are not people or animals but dances. These dances have been mechanised, electrified, and often obscured by their own rhythmic impulse. Old forms and formulaic tropes are given new identities, freed from the confines of metric stability and the expectation that they be “danceable”. The essentially mechanical, artificial aspect of music (and of art in general?) is embodied in the piano, here a brittle, seedy protagonist whose string limbs hover and flail about it. Conflicting rhythms dominate the surface, oscillating between insistent repetition and mad, angular flourishes. The generally jerky, muscular rhythmic material is periodically frozen throughout the work, most strikingly in the ninth movement (chain). Here a string of rich, impressionistic chords briefly reveals an alternative, interior world which is then rudely dismissed in an almost haphazard finale.

Commissioned:
Commissioned by the NZTrio with funding from Creative New Zealand
Difficulty:
Advanced
Influences:
Funders:

Performance History

World Premiere for P: burlesques mécaniques; NZTrio 141012 14 Oct 2012 Performed by the NZTrio at St Peter’s Church, Rue Balguerie, in Akaroa.
NZTrio
16 Oct 2012 Performed by the NZTrio at the Chamber Gallery, Rangiora Library, in Rangiora.
NZTrio
18 Oct 2012 Performed by the NZTrio at the Dunedin Public Art Gallery, in Dunedin.
NZTrio
28 Oct 2012 Performed by the NZTrio at Loft at Q, 305 Queen Street, in Auckland.
NZTrio
31 Oct 2012 Performed by the NZTrio at City Gallery, Wellington
NZTrio
15 Nov 2012 Performed by NZTrio at the Ahmet Adnan Saygun Culture Centre in Izmir, Turkey
NZTrio
18 May 2014 Performed by NZTrio at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing
NZTrio
30 Aug 2014 Performed by NZTrio at Musikhuset Aarhus, Lille Sal, Aarhus, Denmark.
NZTrio
31 Aug 2014 Performed by NZTrio, at The Royal Danish Theatre, Copenhagen.
NZTrio
05 May 2015 Performed by NZTrio at Old St John’s Church, Nelson, New Zealand.
NZTrio
07 May 2015 Performed by NZTrio at The Speirs Centre, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
NZTrio
08 May 2015 Performed by NZTrio as part of the Chamber Music New Zealand: A Residency Tour at the Adam Concert Room in Wellington.
NZTrio
09 May 2015 Performed by NZTrio at The Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington, New Zealand.
NZTrio
15 May 2015 Performed by NZTrio as part of the Chamber Music New Zealand: A Residency Tour at the Gallagher Academy in Hamilton
NZTrio
22 May 2015 Performed by NZTrio as part of the Chamber Music New Zealand: A Residency Tour at the Music Theatre, University of Auckland in Auckland
NZTrio

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