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the dancing of summer

for string orchestra

Year:  2008   ·  Duration:  4m 30s

Year:  2008
Duration:  4m 30s

Composer:   Louise Webster

Films, Audio & Samples

Sample Score

Sample: pages 1-4

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‘The dancing of summer’ is the description given to the shimmering haze and rising heat waves seen over the land in summer. I first encountered the phrase in an autobiography by New Zealand author Ruth Park, but subsequently learned that it had it’s origins in Maori haka and the coming of Hine-raumati, the Summer Maid, whose presence on calm, warm days is revealed in a curious quivering appearance in the air. The music has been built around shimmering trills and tremolo to suggest the summer haze, repeated short phrases like bird-calls, a cicada-like dialogue between first and second violins in alternating 2/4 and 7/8 meters, and a nostalgic arpeggio melody first heard in the cellos. The work was written for the Westlake string orchestra in 2008.

Performance history