Toi Huarewa / Final Rehearsal

Horo, Jake & Sarah - Concert Chamber

Today we had our final rehearsal, prior to the premiere of Toi Huarewa. It’s been an amazing process and, as usual, I’m anticipating the performance with a mixture of excitement and terror.

There really is something surreal about spending so many months immersed in a project, and then seeing all of that time and care finally being concentrated into a single moment in time – having it travel into the ears and memories of other people. In a way, it’s like watching water rushing down a plug-hole… it might seem to be draining slowly at first, but in the end it disappears quickly and violently.

There’s a part of me that hates to finish a piece – I have a beloved collection of unfinished pieces at home and every now and then I revisit them, write a bit more, change things, remove things… and generally revel in the fact that, until I decide otherwise, their final form is plastic and unknown. Perhaps it’s because so much of my musical life is spent working to deadlines, but I don’t know if I’ll ever come to terms with surrendering my more private music to the outside world.

Writing a commission has a great freedom to it… you can present anything you want… but there is the small matter of the piece needing to be finished for the performance.

Which is not to say that I’m not looking forward to it! The music couldn’t be in better hands than those of the dexterous and sympathetic NZTrio and Horomona Horo, who have been the happiest and most inspiring of performers and collaborators.

Here’s a link to a lovely article that William Dart wrote about Toi Huarewa in todays New Zealand Herald. To read it, click here.

Final Rehearsal copy

Published by

Victoria Kelly / Music

I am a composer and performer of music. I have three gorgeous children and a sweet (yet manly) husband... I'm a vegan (but my husband and children are passionate carnivores)... I love reading (and I'm not a literary snob, but I just could NOT stomach more than 2 pages of Fifty Shades of Grey)... I try to keep up a regular yoga practice (and regularly fail)... I appreciate honesty, clarity, mischief, intelligence and humour in other people... my many heroes include Oscar Wilde, Christopher Hitchens, Tina Fey, JS Bach, Prince, Kurt Vonnegut, Igor Stravinsky, Bernard Herrmann, Joni Mitchell, Stanley Kubrick and Francis Bacon... because they all tell the truth, individually and uncompromisingly, as they see it. I wish I could still eat cheese, mayonnaise and red meat but I'm better off without them and the world would probably be a better place if the manufacturing of those foods was carried out on a smaller scale, in a more compassionate, environmentally and socially conscious way. It would be great if we were all more directly involved with our food chain. I always vote, and get a bit tearful on election day, because brave women fought for that right on my behalf and there are women in the world who are still fighting for that right today. But I vote, now, with a sense of hopelessness and cynicism, because I don't think politicians have anything except their own, and their benefactors', best interests at heart. At the risk of sounding too serious, it should be said that I do love a good bottle of Pinot Noir. And indeed, Champagne. In fact... maybe even more than one bottle. More than two bottles however and I will either sing Eye of the Tiger or pretend to be a Solid Gold Dancer. Neither of these things are desirable outcomes. If a person can make me laugh until I cry, struggle to breathe and roll around in pain, I will be their friend forever. My guilty musical pleasure is Roger Whittaker. And, while I like to think of myself as fairly educated about music, I must confess that I simply cannot listen to Wagner. I love my work. And I love being a mother to my children. But I do feel as if, when I'm trying to do both, I do neither well. And yet, if I did only one of those things, my longing for the other would be as miserable as feeling that I can do neither thing well. I think this catch 22 is paralysing almost every woman I know. Feminism is not dead and neither should Masculinism be... men and women have been equally displaced by the social changes of the past few decades. But someone or something is profiteering from our compromises and our sacrifices and I would like to see that injustice addressed and some balance restored. I have no idea what that says about me politically - I believe as much in personal responsibility as I do in compassion for others. I cannot abide greed, racism or prejudice - or the proud and willful ignorance & arrogance that tends to go hand in hand with them. I fear for the world when I see those traits overrepresented in the people who lead us. But show me a good thing well made - whether it's a piece of art, a book, a song, a car, a building, a meal, a neighbourly gesture, a garden or a unified field theory - and I regain my hope for humanity instantly. (The painting is Dirty Grapes by Mark Rothko)

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