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Changing Lanes

for piano

Composer:   Philip Norman

Films, Audio & Samples

Philip Norman: Changing Lan...

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Philip Norman: Changing Lan...

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Terror is teaching your son to drive in rush hour traffic and realising a change of lanes is necessary. Panic is furtive glances behind, ears alert for squealing brakes, body braced for the crunch of metal on metal, urge to scream suppressed for fear of spooking your young charge. Relief is the realisation you have crossed the line, car unrumpled, bodies unscathed. Exhilaration is moving once again with clear space ahead.

None of this has anything to do with my composition of Changing Lanes, but it is where the title came from.

Change is one of life’s hardest manoeuvres, yet often it is the anticipation that brings the greatest challenge. In this piece, my indecision was which lane to drive down stylistically. In the end, my answer was a question: why keep to one style? Why not make a feature of transition?

The work was composed especially for Diedre Irons, a dearly departed neighbour of three years in Christchurch before she changed lanes for a warmer Wellington. Funding for the composition was from Creative New Zealand.


Performance history

06 Mar 2005: Performed by Deidre Irons (piano); Great Hall, Christchurch