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Anthony Ritchie: Lullabies ...Embedded video
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Lullabies was commissioned by The Auckland Choral Society for their 2015 season, and first performed June 6, in The Holy Trinity Cathedral, with funding from Creative NZ. It is a cycle of six songs, to be performed without a break, to poems by Elena Poletti, a Dunedin-based poet.
Lullabies are common to all cultures, and are richly varied in their themes and moods. These six lullabies traverse different perspectives, both adult and child. Shush-a-shush has a parent calming her child to sleep through images of the sea and beach. In Little One it is gentle rain than lulls the child to sleep. Sounds of Penguins makes a comparison between little blue penguins under a house, and children busily preparing for bed. The moonlight, wind, waves and lighthouse all conspire to finally calm them down. In The Nightsingers it is the sounds of tree-frogs, ruru (morepork), and cats that accompany the lullaby; they are presented one by one and then are combined in the coda. Beddington is a frisky lullaby for children to sing, and including a round and a Monster-Munch-Up chant. The final song Hope of my heart reflects on a child’s future, and remembers the passing of a sister and child (represented in the song by the childrens’ voices as echoes). All the forces come together in this song, to round off the cycle.
1. Shush-a-shush – main choir
2. Little One – solo soprano
3. Sounds of penguins – childrens’ choir, main choir and soprano
4. The Nightsingers – soprano and main choir
5. Beddington – children’s choir
6. Hope of my heart - childrens’ choir, main choir and soprano
Poems by Elena Poletti
06 Jun 2015: Performed by Auckland Choral, Brian Law (conductor), Emma Roxburgh (soprano), Timothy Noon (organ) and St Cuthbert's College Song Squad and Junior Black Watch Singers, at Holy Trinity Cathedral, Auckland