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Firestarters - zones of darkness and unexpected light

for piano trio and ostifan

Year:  2008 Instrumentation:  piano, violin, cello, ostifan

Year:  2008
Instrumentation  piano, violin, cello, ostifan

Composer:   Philip Dadson

Films, Audio & Samples

Philip Dadson: Firestarters...

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Sample Score

Sample: Page 1.

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An improvisatory impulse is at the root of this work which involves the performers embracing and engaging with a process, a language, a degree of risk and the ability to fly. The success of Firestarters hinges precariously on just this, and for me that is an essential and exciting element. Within the parameters of each Firestarter, is a provision for improvisation and interpretation. Detailed instructions, including a somewhat prescriptive methodology and a set of invocations, chart the territory for a series of dialogues, much like a set of rites might pave the way for unpredictable arisings. There is an obvious analogy here with mapping uncharted terrain. Equipment, maps and road code are provided. The performers embark, interpreting directions according to their lights and taking the audience with them. Firestarters might also be understood as channels or invocations towards dialogues with another dimension – with those guiding lights who have kindled fires in zones of darkness and human ignorance.

Commissioned note

Commissioned by NZTrio, funded by Creative New Zealand

Performance history

11 Sep 2008: NZTrio National Tour 2008 1

12 Sep 2008: NZTrio National Tour 2008 2

15 Sep 2008: NZTrio National Tour 2008 3

16 Sep 2008: NZTrio National Tour 2008 4

20 Sep 2008: NZTrio National Tour 2008 5

26 Feb 2010: NZTrio with Nunns and Dadson

06 Mar 2010: NZTrio: Movement

Performed by NZTrio in 2008

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