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Songs my Mother Taught Me: Music for Mother's Day

When:

Sun 9 May 2010, 2:30pm–4:00pm

Where: Sacred Heart Cathedral, 24 Hill St, Thorndon, Wellington

Restrictions: All Ages

Listed by: Sharon Cuzens

“A concert not just for mothers, but for anyone who ever had a mother” is how musical director Christine Argyle describes Wellington chamber choir Nota Bene’s upcoming concert.

“Many of us learned our first songs on our mother’s lap. This Mother’s Day we will pay tribute to mothers throughout the ages. Works by some of Europe’ s most celebrated composers of the past and present will sit beautifully alongside pieces by New Zealand’s foremost choral composers David Childs and David Hamilton.”

A new work by Wellington composer Carol Shortis will also feature. Song for Dulcie was commissioned by one of Nota Bene’s singers in memory of her mother, who passed on her great love of music to her children. It’s a setting of a beautiful text by the Indian Nobel Prize-winning poet Rabindranath Tagore: ‘This song will wind its music like the warm arms of love and when my voice is silent in death, my song will speak in your living heart’.

Soprano Frances Moore, a finalist in the 2007 Lexus Song Quest, will sing Dvorak’s touching Songs My Mother Taught Me, and other songs by Haydn, Gounod and Hely-Hutchinson, accompanied by Julie Coulson. Well-known actor Lyndee-Jane Rutherford (Grumpy Old Women, Mum’s Choir, Skitz, Telly Laughs) links the whole together with reflections on motherhood.

Mary, the Mother of God, has been an immense source of inspiration to many great composers, and the first half of the programme is dedicated to settings in praise of Mary by Bruckner, Grieg and Holst, as well as more contemporary pieces by three composers often referred to as ‘holy minimalists’: Arvo Pärt, John Tavener and Henryk Gorecki.

“I expect our audience will be bowled over by the sheer beauty of these compositions,” says Christine Argyle. “In the tranquility of Sacred Heart Cathedral, it’s the ideal way to spend the afternoon this Mother’s Day.”

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