Films, Audio & Samples
Mary Celeste: Strange creat...Internal audio
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Sample: pages 1–4 of scoreSee details ➔
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Strange creature is a short piece for chamber choir or vocal sextet. It is intended both as a stand-alone piece and as the 2nd movement of my Motet for a Starling called Matisse, an a cappella piece in seven movements telling the story of finding a baby starling on the ground and our subsequent life together. Strange creature describes how baby starling Matisse looked as a seven-day-old chick: tiny, strange, and terrifyingly fragile.
This piece is uncharacteristically minimalist for me. It is scored for SSAATT and features long overlapping discordant held notes overlaid with a simple melody and harmony in the upper parts. It evokes the slightly eerie sounds we hear in a large chamber with a vaulted ceiling. In fact, I was thinking specifically of the wonderful resonance of the Wellington Railway Station Booking Hall. It fascinated me as a small child because of the unique and mysterious echoey sounds our voices made when I walked through it with my parents.
Text written by Mary Celeste