Wind Octet - Four Canadian Sketches (8 part flute choir)

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This piece is dedicated to the Academy Flute Choir, Victoria. The four movements represent my thoughts about Canada and its people.

1. March for the Young: Canada is a young nation and I imagined it beginning its journey towards nation status as a child growing up and learning how to defend itself through play. The image of Canadian boys playing soldiers and marching is important in this movement.

2. The Great White Cold: I imagined the bitter freezing cold and icy beauty of Canadian winters (not that I have ever experienced such) and I used some slightly unusual techniques to create the impression of a cold wind blowing across the arctic scenery.

3. Campfire Songs: I had this vision of the great outdoors with Canadian families going camping in the mountainous regions sitting round their campfire at night and singing songs. I had no idea at the time whether Canadians were campfire songers or what kinds of songs they might choose, so I selected a number of ’folk’ songs from the "Great Canadian Tune Book" and incorporated them into this movement.

4. The New Found Land: This movement moves to Canada’s eastern seaboard and I imagined new emigrants to the country arriving at a busy harbour and seeing all the hustle and bustle of a lively community and sea port. With some difficulty the debarkees find their land legs but then become absorbed in the lively new world they have moved to.

Score ID
Year of composition
Difficult (Grades 7+)
13 minutes
Classical music
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