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for SAATB choir

Year:  2007

Year:  2007

David Hamilton

Composer:   David Hamilton


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This short piece sets a sonnet by Dora Hagemeyer, an aunt of NZ novelist Maurice Gee (she is mentioned several times in "Memory Pieces" by Maurice Gee). Aside from the fact that her father was a pacifist who moved to California during WWI leaving Dora behind, little biographical information can be found about this writer, who appears to have been active in the middle part of the twentieth century. This poem was originally published in Lyric Poems of New Zealand in 1942.

The poem, titled Ecstasy, is a joyful one and the poet is saying that nothing is beyond her powers and scope on a day such as this. The opening line is used again at the end of the work, but otherwise the poem is set with limited repetition of the words.

Ecstasy was written at the request of Tauranga Civic Choir for an outdoor performance where a New Zealand work had been requested. The work seldom drops in dynamic level and has much homophonic writing.

Dedication note

Written at the request of Tauranga Civic Choir

Text note

Text by Dora Hagemeyer