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for mezzo-soprano, piano and bassoon

Year:  2008

Year:  2008


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Camelot, a collaboration between Glenn Colquhoun and Gillian Whitehead, is a response to a visit by ten artists on the Breaksea Girl, skippered by Lance Shaw and Ruth Dalley, to Dusky and Doubtful Sounds in Fiordland, and particularly to a trip up Camelot, the river that flows into Gaer Arm in Doubtful Sound. Glenn's poems, cryptic and spare, relate to old Chinese poetic forms, and the cycle traces the poet's travelling up the river, and, changed by what he learns, his return to the open water. The titles of the poems draw on imagery very apparent on this journey.

One thing that was made very apparent on that journey was the extent of the degradation of the environment, because of the depredations of deer, goats, rats, possums and other pests, which have made the forest a silent place, where biodiversity is acutely threatened.

The first performance of Camelot took place in St Paul's Cathedral, Dunedin on 8th October, 2008, during the Otago Festival of the Arts. The performers were Janet Roddick (voice), Emma Sayers (piano) and Ben Hoadley (bassoon).

Both the performances and the journey to the sounds were devised as a fundraiser by the Caselberg Trust, which is raising money to purchase the Broad Bay house of Anna and John Caselberg, for use by resident artists.

Dedication note

for Ruth Dalley and Lance Shaw

Text note

poems by Glenn Colquhoun

Performance history

20 Sep 2008: Performed by Janet Roddick, Ben Hoadley and Emma Sayers at the Adam Concert Room, Victoria University, Wellington

08 Oct 2008: Nine Artists in Fiordland