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Red Contributor


David Griffiths

Composer, Performer

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Born: 1950

Biography

David is a New Zealander, born and brought up in Auckland.  He gained his Bachelor of Music in 1971 and left for England to further his studies at the Guildhall School of Music in London. On his return to New Zealand he completed his Master of Music 1st class Hons. in 1973. Early successes came with winning the John Cowie Reid competition for composition in 1973 with Improperia for 8 part choir and tenor soloist and a tour made by the Dorian choir under Peter Godfrey with performances of Five Credo Extracts throughout Europe. The Dorian choir again toured in 1975 and presented David’s Salve Regina for 16 part choir at the London Proms series and Beata Virgo for 12 part choir at the Three Choirs Festival in Chichester.

While in England in 1980 David wrote The Discovery for up to 16 voice parts and four soloists. This work was presented that year at the Paris International Rostrum of Composers. Under the baton of Karen Grylls the New Zealand National Youth Choir made several tours and often performed Griffiths’ works.  His Lie Deep my Love cycle was included as part of their winning the Choir of the World award in Wales 1999. His Beata Virgo has become internationally popular.

Further international successes included a tour by Bach Musica in 2000 when his Stabat Mater for choir, soloists and string orchestra was performed throughout Germany. In May 2002 his commissioned work, Te Deum for 12 part choir was premiered by Opus & Choral Ensemble in Seattle USA under the direction of Loren Poten.

Since this time Griffiths has had a steady list of commissions from schools and has had many pieces performed in the Big Sing Choral Festival. Included in the early part of the new millennia are The Servant for choir, soloists and two string quartets and five Operas for the University of Waikato. The Woman from MoabThree FranksThe White LadyMary Müller – The Secret Suffragist and The Walls of Troy_.

A CD of Griffiths song cycles was launched in July 2008 on the Atoll Label including Five Love SongsShoriken and Charms and Knots sung by the composer.  An earlier CD, Ahi, also released by Atoll, included his Six Watercolours.

In 2011 and 2012 Griffiths wrote a number of pieces for the Italian group, Associazione Culturale Colle Ionic. Hymn for the Music on Volcanic Lakes Festival, Pane Vero for the Infiorata Festival in Genzano di Roma, Cantico del SoleGorgon for saxophone quartet and Lo Nemi for the Italian choir Chantharmony.  Two other works with Italian connections ensued, Coquettes for piano duo, written for Sara and Massimo Perciacante, and Kapowairua, an extended piece in four movements for soprano saxophone and piano for the Italian duo ‘Colorado’.

In February 2013 Griffiths completed his opera in Italian, Il Coligola Riflesso for wind septet, brass quintet, percussion and strings.  The libretto was by Maria Lanciotti and describes Caligula’s torturous descent into insanity.    Recent works include Sonata for cello and piano, Sonata for violin and piano, Whakaaraara-pa for 8 part men’s choir and piano, 21 short pieces for piano, Two Sonatinas for piano and a setting of the 23 Psalm for SATB choir and piano.


Composed (86)

3 Franks

55m


A Child is Born

for SAB choir


A More Excellent Way

for SSSAA choir and piano


A Soli Ortus Cardine

for SATB choir and organ, 4m


A View of Rangitoto

for SSAA choir and piano


Ad Cenam Agni

for school orchestra, 9m


Annunciation

for SSATB choir, 4m


Answer Me, O Lord

for SATB choir and organ


Beata Virgo

for 12-part choir, 4m


Blessed Jesu at Thy Word

for SATB choir and soprano soloist


Blessed Jesus

for SATB choir, 3m


Bold Sir Brian Botany

for SSA choir and piano


Charms and Knots

for baritone and piano, 13m


Concert Mass

for ATTBB vocal ensemble, 11m


Confitebor

for two SATB choirs, two horns and organ with baritone and soprano soloists, 12m


Cosmic Praise

for SATB choir and SATB soloists, 8m


Dead on the Tree

for SATB choir, 3m


Dormi Jesu

for SATB choir, 3m


Dwell in Unity

for SATB choir


Elegy

for cello, 6m


Equation

for piano, 2m


Fantasy

for flute, 6m


Five Credo Extracts

for three 4-part choirs, 13m


Five Frozen Pieces

for piano


Five Landscapes

for SATB choir


Five Love Songs

for tenor and piano, 11m


Five Songs from Titoki

for soprano and piano, 8m


For My Children

for soprano and piano, 3m


Four Tudor Anthems

for SATB choir, 13m


Gloria in Excelsis Deo

for SSAA choir and piano


I will lift mine eyes

for SSAA choir and flute


Improperia

for eight-part choir with soprano or tenor soloist, 9m


Jesus the First Born of Creation

for SATB choir with soprano and baritone soloists


Karitane

for SSAA choir and piano, 4m


Lie Deep, My Love

for SATB choir and soloists, 11m


Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

for SATB choir, 7m


Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis

for SATB with soprano and alto solos, 8m


Make a Joyful Noise

for SSAA choir and piano


Mass

for SATB choir, 10m


O Magnum Mysterium

for twelve-part choir, 15m


O Sacred Convivium

for SATB choir with four soloists, 8m


O Vos Omnes

for twelve-part choir, 7m


Oreti Beach

for ATTBB vocal ensemble, 9m


Parable

for small orchestra, 13m


Parable of the Vineyard

for baritone and orchestra, 12m


Praise the Lord

for SATB choir, 2m


Praise the Lord

for SATB choir, 2m


Psalm 133

for SATB choir, 2m


Psalm of Trust

for SATB choir and orchestra, 9m


Puer Natus

for four-part women's choir, 3m


Riko Riko

for chamber orchestra, 9m


Salve Regina

for double SATB choir, 7m


Selwyn Centenary Commissions

for SATB choir, 32m


Seven Miniatures

for four-part girls' choir


Seven Pieces for piano

for piano, 12m


Shoriken

for tenor and piano, 18m


Shoriken

for baritone and piano


Sing to the Lord a New Song

for SATB choir and percussion, 3m


Six Legs or More

for piano, 10m


Six Watercolours

for voice, clarinet in B flat, cello and piano


Sonata for Clarinet and Piano

for clarinet and piano, 10m


Sonata for horn and piano

for horn and piano, 20m


Sonata in C

for piano, 9m


St Barnabas Liturgy

for choir and ensemble, 10m


Stabat Mater

for SATB choir and organ, 12m


Summer, Pelorus Sound

for two-part choir and piano


Tantum Ergo

for ATTB vocal ensemble, 4m


Te Deum Laudamus

for twelve-part SATB choir


The Beatitudes

for boys' choir, baritone and organ, 9m


The Discovery

for SATB choir with soloists, 9m


The Girl who Stayed at Home

for soprano and piano, 3m


The Spirit of God

for SATB choir and baritone soloist, 3m


Three Canons

for piano


Three Pieces

for flute and piano, 8m


Variations for Organ

for organ, 12m


Venite

for SATB choir and organ, 8m


Vexilla Regis

for flute, 8m