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David Farquhar


Born: 1928 Died: 2007


David Farquhar was born in Cambridge, New Zealand in 1928 but spent most of his early years in Fiji. He was educated in New Zealand and began his university studies in Christchurch before completing his degree at Victoria University in Wellington where he studied with Douglas Lilburn. He taught briefly at St Peters School, Cambridge, before going to Britain where he completed an MA at Cambridge University, and also studied composition with Benjamin Frankel at the Guildhall School of Music in London.

On his return to New Zealand he joined the staff of the Department of Music at Victoria University, and was made Professor of Music in 1976, retiring in 1993. He was the Founder-President of the Composers' Association of New Zealand in 1974 and was awarded their Citation for Services to New Zealand Music in 1984. From 1982–1995 he was a member of the Board of the New Zealand Composers' Foundation and was a Trustee of the Centre for New Zealand Music. In 2004 he was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to music. He wrote numerous orchestral, choral, stage and instrumental works, songs and music for children, and has been recognised since the 1950s as being at the forefront of New Zealand composition.

David Farquhar died in Wellington, New Zealand in 2007.

Composed (184)

...And one makes ten

for piano, 10m

A Christmas with Carols

for SATB choir, narrator and organ, 31m

A Christmas with Carols

for SATB choir, narrator and orchestra, 31m

A Joyful Song

for piano

A Little Song-Suite

for high voice and piano, 8m

A Paire of Wings

for medium voice and piano, 3m

A Sad Song

for piano

A Unicorn For Christmas

opera in three acts, 2h

A Waltz Suite from "Ring Round the Moon"

for string orchestra, 10m


for SATB choir, 7m

Anniversary Duets (first set)

for piano duet, 12m

Anniversary Duets (second set)

for piano duet, 13m

Anniversary Duos

for two guitars, 14m

Anniversary Suite No. 1

for orchestra, 15m

Anniversary Suite No. 2

for orchestra, 16m

Ariel's Song

for soprano, recorder and piano, 1m

Au clair de la Lune

for violin and piano, 1m


for piano and orchestra, 14m


for wind quintet, 12m

Bachiana No. 2

for wind quintet, 10m


for piano, 11m

Bagpipe Music

for vocal sextet, 5m

Bells in their Seasons

for double choir and orchestra, 25m

Bethsabe's Song

for medium voice and piano, 3m


for orchestra, 11m

Birthday Fanfare

for two trumpets and two horns, 2m

Black, White and Coloured: Second Set

five pieces for piano, 12m

Black, White and Coloured: Third Set

five pieces for piano, 12m

Blues and Pinks

for high voice and guitar, 13m

CANZ Box 4065

for three trumpets, 1m

Carols to Sing and Play

for voice and piano, 30m


for cello, 7m


for viola or violin and audience, 5m

Concertino for piano and strings

for piano and strings, 15m

Concerto for guitar and small orchestra

for guitar and chamber orchestra, 18m

Concerto for Six

for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, vibraphone and piano, 10m

Concerto for Wind Quintet

for wind quintet, 17m

Concerto sul "la"

for SATB choir, 4m


for piano, 26m


for piano

Dance Suite from "Ring Round the Moon"

for small orchestra, 19m

Dance Suite from "Ring Round the Moon"

for violin and piano, 19m


for mixed chamber ensemble, 1m

Divertimento for Brass

for brass ensemble (11 players), 9m


for piano duet, 9m

Duet for guitar and sitar

for guitar and sitar, 4m

Duet for harmonica and guitar

for harmonica and guitar, 5m

Duet for violin and guitar

for violin and guitar, 5m

earth, air, water...

for violin, 5m


for violin, 1m


for piano

Echoes and Reflections

for string orchestra, 14m

Eight Blake Songs

for baritone or mezzo-soprano and piano, 15m


for string orchestra, 7m

Enchanted Island

opera in three acts, 1h 40m


for string orchestra, 7m


for two cellos, 14m


for two violins, 13m


for orchestral violins, 8m


for guitar quartet, 8m

Falling Asleep

for medium voice and piano, 3m

Festival Te Deum

for SATB choir and organ, 7m

Five Canons for two clarinets

for two clarinets, 6m

Five Scenes

for guitar, 11m

Five Shakespeare Songs

for SSA choir, 8m

Five Songs of e e cummings

for baritone and piano, 10m


for five dancers and five instruments, 13m

For Harry

for viola, guitar and double bass, 3m

Four Janet Frame Songs

for medium voice and piano, 11m

Four Socratic Dialogues

for two guitars, 9m

Harlequin Overture

for orchestra, 7m


for piano

Homage to Stravinsky

for wind octet, 7m

Homage to Stravinsky

for brass quintet, 7m

I Sing of a Maiden

for SATB choir, 2m

In Black and White

for piano, 2m

In Despite Of Death

for baritone and piano, 15m


for piano duet and two percussionists, 10m

Jubilate Deo

for treble voices (or solo soprano), SATB choir and organ, 3m

Lines from the Beach House

for medium voice and piano, 3m


for medium voice and piano, 3m

Magpies and Other Birds

for vocal quartet, 8m


for clarinet and string orchestra, 4m

March and Musette

for violin and piano, 1m


for orchestra


for small orchestra, 15m


for guitar, 2m

noone and anyone

for vocal sextet, 8m

Now is the Hour

for wind quintet, 3m

O Captain Cook!

stage musical, 2h

O Come All Ye Faithful

for violin and piano, 1m


for treble recorder, 6m


for piano, 10m


for piano, 12m

On the Swag

for SATB choir, 2m


for gamelan, 2m


for flute and tape, 4m


for two equal voices or instruments, 5m


for piano, 7m


for voices, brass, woodwinds and percussion

Piano Trio: Woven Strands

for violin, cello and piano, 14m

Prayer Before Birth

for narrator, SSA choir and organ, 5m

Prelude for Piano

for piano

Prospero Dreaming

for guitar, 8m

Psalm 29

for SATB choir and organ, 4m

Reflections on Three Japanese Songs

for string quartet, 3m

Remembrance of Things Past

for high voice and piano, 10m


for violin and piano, 5m


for small orchestra, 2m

Rorate Coeli

for SATB choir, 2m

Scenes and Memories

for violin, piano and percussion, 17m


for orchestra, 10m

Serenade for Strings

for string orchestra, 23m

Serenade for Wind Quartet

for wind quartet, 12m


opera in one act, for soprano, tenor, baritone, bass and ensemble, 35m


for piano

Sing unto the Lord a New Song

for narrator and SATB choir, 5m

Six Songs of Women

for soprano and piano, 16m


for piano, 12m

Smile My Weeping

for medium voice and piano, 3m


for piano, 8m

String Quartet

for string quartet, 18m

String Quartet No. 2

for string quartet, 17m

String Quartet No. 3

for string quartet, 24m

String Quartet No. 4

for string quartet, 22m


for cello, 15m


for solo guitar, 14m

Suite for Harpsichord

for harpsichord, 13m

Swan Songs

for baritone and guitar, 13m


for piano

Symphony No. 1

for orchestra, 23m

Symphony No. 2

for orchestra, 29m

Take Thou This Rose

for medium voice and piano, 3m

The Islands

for SATB choir, 8m

The King's Aria

for tenor and orchestra

The Leaden Echo and The Golden Echo

for soprano, SATB choir and small orchestra, 13m

The Librarian's Wife

for medium voice and piano, 3m

The Score

for voices and piano, with optional instrumental parts

The Uses of Adversity

chamber opera, 15m

Three Bagatelles

for piano, 7m

Three Canonic Bagatelles

for piano, 1m

Three Children's Songs

for unison voices and piano, 6m

Three Cilla McQueen Songs

for mezzo-soprano and piano, 10m

Three Echoes

for piano, 6m

Three for Two

for clarinet and guitar, 10m

Three Horn Duos

for two horns, 4m

Three Improvisations

for piano, 6m

Three Inventions

for piano, 5m

Three Lullabies

for piano, 6m

Three Medieval Carols

for soprano and piano, 12m

Three Nursery Rhymes

for SATB choir, 4m

Three of a Kind

for SATB choir, 5m

Three Pieces

for double bass, 10m

Three Pieces for violin and piano

for violin and piano, 12m

Three Scots Ballads

for baritone and orchestra, 10m

Three Scots Ballads

for baritone and piano, 11m

Three Studies

for piano, 7m

Three Tudor Dances

for small orchestra, 6m

Twelve Traditionals

for voice and piano, 2m


for trumpet and piano, 2m

Waiata Maori

for SATB choir, 10m

Walking on my Feet

for voices, instruments and piano, 2m

Where have all the whitebait gone?

for children's voices, 2m

Why not?

for unison voices and piano, 2m

Wild Iron

for children's voices and percussion, 2m

Wild Iron

for medium voice and piano, 3m

Winter wakeneth all my care

for SATB choir, 2m

Writing on the Sand

for mezzo-soprano and violin, 9m

Arranged (1)

Desdemona's Song

for guitar, 1m

Performances (1)

Gamelan Aotearoa

Experience gamelan at the National Library with Wellington's __Gamelan Padhang Moncar__, introduc...