Movement II (Swainson’s Thrush) has been released by the Quatuor Bozzini on the album “À chacun sa miniature” collection qb CQB 1113. Click here to view in iTunes.

Performances:

January 16, 2017
ddmmyy, The Yard, London, UK
Manon Quartet
May 8, 2015
AngelicA Festival, Bologna
Quatuor Bozzini
January 29, 2015
Phillip T. Young Recital Hall, Victoria, BC
Emily Carr String Quartet
June 25, 2013
CAMMAC Festival, Harrington, QC
Quatuor Bozzini
April 19, 2013
Salon QB, Chapelle historique du Bon Pasteur, Montreal
Quatuor Bozzini
July 29, 2012
Ottawa Chamberfest
Quatuor Bozzini
July 25, 2012
Annual Conference of the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres, Montreal
Quatuor Bozzini
November 21, 2011
HCMF//, Huddersfield
(Swainson’s Thrush only)
Quatuor Bozzini
October 22, 2011
Transit, Leuven
Quatuor Bozzini
October 18, 2011
De Link, Tilburg
Quatuor Bozzini
September 12, 2011
Núcleo Música Nueva de Montevideo, Uruguay
Quatuor Bozzini
April 21, 2011
Salon des compositeurs, Chapelle historique du Bon Pasteur, Montreal
(Swainson’s Thrush only)
Quatuor Bozzini
March 13, 2011
Artspring, Salt Spring Island, BC (premiere)
Quatuor Bozzini

Notes:

Warblework
1. Leaving
2. Swainson’s Thrush
3. Hermit Thrush
4. Veery

 

“beautiful and compelling” – Jennie Gottschalk, Sound Expanse

 

This piece has an unusual origin. Years ago, in order to leave my home on the west coast of Canada to study composition in Europe, I raised money for my travel by selling as-yet unwritten bars of music to everyone I’d ever met. The result was a huge commission from over sixty friends, family, and community members. In 2011, with the help of the Quatuor Bozzini, I finally made good on my promise and created the piece Warblework.

The first movement of this composition is based on a melody, Leaving, by Canadian fiddler Zav RT, who was then a resident of the remote Salt Spring Island, where myself and many of the sixty supporters lived. It transcribes the recording Zav made of this melody, adorned by the warblings of the late Oliver Schroer.

The following three movements are based on birdsongs — in particular of three thrushes — whose songs whistle up and down the harmonic series. When these birdsongs are slowed down, they reveal incredibly human-like melodies. What results in these four movements then is something of a poem to the regional sounds of the Pacific coast, of both the cafés (Zav RT) and the forests (the swainson’s thrush, hermit thrush, and veery).