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Blue Work


The Bomb is Made, op. 99

for large choir, strings, organ and timpani

Year:  2000   ·  Duration:  5m

Year:  2000
Duration:  5m

Composer:   Anthony Ritchie

Films, Audio & Samples

Sample Score

Sample: Page 1-5.

See details ➔

Borrow/Hire:

To borrow items or hire parts please email SOUNZ directly at info@sounz.org.nz.

About

The Auckland Choral Society requested that this commission reflect the theme of a "Celebration Piece for the Millennium of New Zealand". At the time of writing (August-September, 2000) the 'celebration' of the Millennium had well and truly been exhausted, and so I wanted to take a different angle to the theme of this piece. I wanted to recognise something about New Zealand that made us special in the global context; something recent that was of particular significance. And when I read Keith Sinclair's poem The Bomb Is Made, I felt I had discovered something special: our recent efforts as peace-makers and in particular New Zealand's anti-Nuclear policy.

Keith Sinclair's poem is five verses long and sketches brilliantly images of modern war, as well as urging us to "Be kind to one another, kiss a little". I have just set the last verse:

      The bomb is made will drop on Rangitoto
      I do not want to see that sun-burned harbour,
      Islandless as moon, red-skied again,
      Its tide unblossomed, sifting wastes of ash.
      Be kind to one another, kiss a little,
      Our only weapon is this gentleness.

As well as being a plea for peace, the music attempts to convey the vivid images in sound. While the mood is predominantly sombre, a sense of quiet celebration prevails at the end.

-AR


Commissioned note

Commissioned by the Auckland Choral Society for its Subscription Series in year 2000, with funding provided by Creative New Zealand.


Text note

Poem by Keith Sinclair