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for orchestra

Year:  2007   ·  Duration:  9m
Instrumentation:  3*23*2*; 2331; timp., 3 perc.; strings | (Perc: wind chimes, anvil, sn.dr, tri., 2 gongs, tam-tam, bs.dr, glock., vib.)

Year:  2007
Duration:  9m
Instrumentation  3*23*2*; 2331; timp., 3 per...

Composer:   Simon Eastwood

Films, Audio & Samples

Simon Eastwood: Aurum - AUDIO

Embedded audio
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Sample Score

Sample: Pages 1-3 of score

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The initial inspiration for Aurum came from a 1976 Bridget Riley painting of the same name. I was fascinated by the vibrant interplay of colour displayed in the painting, with wavy lines of bright yellow and white set against darker shades of blue. Each line appeared clear and separate, yet from a distance they would all merge into one luminescent texture.

As the piece progressed it took on a life of its own, however throughout the composition process I was chiefly concerned with the interaction between different instrumental and harmonic colours, and the sonic texture these interactions produced. The word ‘aurum’ itself means gold, and therefore evokes images of brightness, brilliance and wealth, but looking at Riley’s painting I noticed a darker layer that seemed to seep up from beneath the brilliance, perhaps portraying a darker side to this precious metal.

– Simon Eastwood

Commissioned note

Commissioned by NZSM orchestra in 2007 as the prize for winning the 2006 Jenny McLeod Award for Composition.

Performance history

17 Oct 2007: Performed by the New Zealand School of Music Orchestra, conducted by Ken Young

04 May 2008: 2008 NZSO-SOUNZ Readings 1