Ensemble Offspring Hatched new work

by Jeremy on November 22, 2014

Border Control

Border Control is a work for piccolo/flute, bass clarinet, trumpet, and vibraphone. It is an extension of Rose’s investigations into cross-cultural music paradigms. The work utilises material from a recent field trip to Bali, Indonesia, where Rose studied at the Cudamani Gamelan school in Ubud, and from a workshop with traditional Korean musicians and Sydney drumming icon Simon Barker at the Australian Art Orchestra’s Creative Music Intensive in Cairns. The impetus for the piece draws from two sources – the dissemination of musical stylistic borders and the ongoing movement of people over national borders. The work is in three movements – fast, slow fast.

In particular, the work acts as a response to the Australian government’s asylum seeker policy. Unfortunately this time will be looked upon in years to come as a dark period of Australia’s history in which many of its policies towards its refugees are unnecessarily hard-hearted. It will be morally condemned alongside Australia’s ‘White Australia’ policy and the stolen generations of Indigenous children. Asylum seekers who risk their lives to travel to Australia by boat are moved to off-shore processing centres where they wait with indefinite detention and no certainty of their fate for themselves or their families. The inhumane treatment of them in these facilities also include stories of rape, malaria and a sense of desperation that has led some refugees to sow their lips together in hunger strike.


Rites is a work for trumpet with vibraphone and microtonal pitched percussion. The parts exhibit a series of deformations of rhythm, pitch and timbre, and the dialogue between the trumpet and percussion is explored in a number of ways that unite and juxtapose against one another. The piece carries a meditative quality that is often trance-like, and introspective. The utilisation of micro-tuning is an attempt to explore a world beyond equal temperament, diffusing our expectations of pitch.

The creation of the work undertook a reverse engineering approach. The trumpet part was written using material from a series of recorded improvisations by the composer. These utilised chromatic and quarter-tone improvisations based on a shifting limited range. The vibraphone and percussion part was then written to accompany this material. The work was then deconstructed and restructured to develop and juxtapose a number of melodic and rhythmic ideas.


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