MP3 Andrew Blyth - Symphony 2006
A symphony in four movements in the tradition of the great classical symphonies.
4 MP3 Songs
CLASSICAL: Symphony, CLASSICAL: Orchestral
A four movement symphony in the tradition of the great classical composers of the last century.
This symphony was written, orchestrated and recorded over a period of about fifteen months and completed in December 2006. It was then revised and re-recorded using computer technology during 2007. Thanks to the initiative of John Barns of Melbourne radio station 3MBS-FM, the work was given a first broadcast presentation on February 4th 2008.
It is not that common for classical music to be realized using just a computer. I believe, however, that when you listen to the music you will not be terribly conscious of the fact that this it is not being performed by a live orchestra. Stylistically, the music is not out of keeping with the major symphonic repertoire of the last century and it employs a standard symphonic form.
My initial reasons for wanting to write a symphony were not complex. No-one had asked me to write the piece and I was not likely to make any money out of the music. But having produced a few large orchestral pieces and releasing a few recordings of my music this seemed like the next logical project to attempt. When I write my music, I mainly do it for my own entertainment. I am primarily concerned with producing some expressive tunes, some attractive harmonies and some energetic rhythms. The music is abstract and its purpose is to entertain. To a degree, this was true of my intentions in writing Symphony 2006 which is essentially a classical-form symphony in four tonal/modal movements. However, I am also aware that in giving some music the title of "symphony" there is the implication of a grand statement. So, is there a grand statement?
My plans and thoughts about the music were coming together at a time when my own country (Australia) appeared to be suffering from an exaggerated state of xenophobia. I have always understood Australia to be a land of immigrants but immigrants were apparently now invaders or "terrorists". Over several years, this new worldview inspired actions that I believe will eventually be recorded by history as a national shame.
Although I was born in Australia, my paternal grandparents arrived in Australia in the 1920''s. Where I grew up most of my friends had parents who had only recently come to Australia. I attended schools where the majority of students in the class were first-generation Australians. When I started teaching in the 1980''s, I taught many students who had just arrived in Australia often under difficult circumstances. So, in my own mind, Symphony 2006 is a story of the history and future of Australia as a land of immigrants. Each of the four movements is about the immigrant experience-an experience, I must admit, I have only imagined.
Movement One is about the individual''s experience of separation and arrival-the journey from one place to another and one life to another. Movement Two is about isolation and loneliness. Movement Three is about the process of separation and arrival being repeated many millions of times. This is not a process peculiar to Australia. It is the history of many nations. Ultimately this movement is about nation-building. Movement Four is about being an independent and self-respecting nation that values people and democratic principles. My feelings are that this remains to be achieved and that independence and self-respect have taken something of a battering recently. Nevertheless, Symphony 2006 is about a journey from the past (Movements 1-3) to a respectable vision of the future (Movement 4). I am not sure whether this represents a grand statement but it may be of some help to listeners to understand the ideas that were running through my mind as I wrote the music.
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