Meditations on Music & Spirit
Musical interludes from The A to Z of Music and Spirit: a user's guide
Instrumentation: flute/alto flute/piccolo; clarinet/bass clarinet; violin; violoncello; vibraphone/marimba; harp; piano. Speaker (optional)
duration: approx. 35 minutes
These musical meditations have been taken from a much larger work composed for choir and chamber ensemble titled: The A to Z of Music and Spirit: a user's guide. The twelve meditations, or various selections of these, can be performed independently with or without a speaker.
Each meditation is fundamentally humanist in conception and informed by hermeneutics. (See A to Z of Music and Spirit... for more information about the texts and work's rationale.) If a speaker is available, each musical meditation is preceded by the speaker reading out the meditation text.
Alternatively, instead of having a dedicated speaker, a musician from the chamber ensemble may wish to read the text. Should a speaker not be available, the texts (definition and meditation) can be printed in a program with the option of projecting each movement's title on a screen using Herculanum font. For example:
Depending on whether the meditations are spoken, these instrumental meditations hover somewhere between the experiential and explanatory. The meditations can be performed without any of the included texts.
The meditations refer to:
i) a particular phenomenon or metaphor that we interpret to having a spiritual quality; and
ii) the techniques used by musicians to evoke that spiritual phenomenon or metaphor.
Score and parts to Meditations on Music and Spirit can be obtained by contacting the composer - https://www.richardvella.net/contact
ABC Classic Recordings of Meditations on Music and Spirit are available from the Australian Music Centre (originally titled The A to Z of Spiritual Music). Recorded and performed by the Sonic Art Ensemble: Marshall McGuire (harp); Christine Draeger (flutes); Margery Smith (clarinets); Alex D’Elia (violin); Adrian Wallis (violoncello); Daryl Pratt (vibraphone/marimba); Bernadette Balkus (piano); Edward Primrose (conductor); Stephen Adams (producer).