GSCC Member Event
Ever since the earliest days of human civilization, the ocean has captured the imagination. What is on the other side? And how can one possibly get there? Terra australis, a new work by local composer Bronwyn Edwards, our Composer-in-Residence this season, recalls those Europeans who first ventured to her native Australia, incorporating didgeridoo into the choir. Her Leonosa recounts an actual shipping vessel that took lumber from Washington to California in the 1840s. Another local composer, Michael Austin Miller, rejoices in the ancient explorers.
Of course, not all such exchanges were peaceful: Horizons, by the South African composer Peter Louis Van Dijk, movingly tells of native life that became slaughtered by European conquerors. Jaakko Mäntyjärvi’s Canticum calamitatis maritimae vividly depicts another tragedy: the sinking of the MS Estonia during a storm at sea in 1994. But rest assured that all is not dark. For example, Benjamin Britten extols St. Cecilia, the patron saint of music, who emerged from the sea. And with much lighter fare as well—particularly Across the sea from the Wailin’ Jennys—the joys of the ocean are always near.