Hear our voices

Bethan at  the House of Bethan is moving house, in a virtual sense, and talks of closing doors and saying farewell to important rooms in our lives.

With her words on my mind, I decided to close the door on my birthday season with a photo of the birthday card that  Megan chose for me. It’s delightful and reminds me of the happiness that Megan is experiencing now she can be outdoors enjoying the beauty of Bloomington. Her winter room time is over.

Blossoms from Bloomington

Blossoms from Bloomington

And, in a really large segue, Megan’s card leads me into my next section, which is a celebration of New Zealand Music Month .  How, you may ask, shaking your heads in bewilderment? Well, Bloomington, home of Megan, has some lovely connections with New Zealanders and their love of music.

For instance; there’s New Zealand born Matthew Leese, baritone and conductor, who earned his  Master of Music degree in Early Music from  Indiana University in Bloomington.

And, then, there is New Zealander Michael Duff who works in Bloomington  and is ‘saving’ the world of music and the Music Tree  (the pernambuco), one Berg Bow at a time.

And, then, comes the annual  Lotus World Music and Arts Festival which is held in downtown Bloomington and, last year, featured the  Pacific Curls  ;  ‘ the high energy trio of Kim Halliday, Ora Barlow, and Jessie Hindin ( who deliver) an eclectic and progressive mix of world roots music with Māori, Pacific and Celtic influences.’

Closer to home, as in closer to my home in Christchurch, there is performer and teacher Valerie Wycoff who has a Master of Music in Opera Performance from Indiana University , and who has been educating our young ones at the National Academy of Singing and Dramatic Art (NASDA) for over 10 years.

And I am sure there are many more of us in New Zealand who have associations with, or have benefited from, the music, theatre and performance that are nurtured in Bloomington, Indiana.

Perhaps, one day, Bloomington will host some of the fine  singers who participated last year at the  New Zealand Secondary Schools’  The Big Sing.

I love this piece by Dilworth’s Fortissimo at The Big Sing. It thrills my heart.

I don’t have a translation for the song but I don’t think that  matters. The language of song and music seems to be universal, with very few barriers; it opens more doors than it closes.

So welcome, come on in and listen:

listen to this non-New Zealand choir, at Slovakia Cantat 2012, singing the beautiful Maori song,  Nga Iwi E, by  Hirini Melbourne. This song  begins All you people! All you people! Be united as one, like the Pacific Ocean

(Nga Iwi E was apparently adopted by Greenpeace and sung on board the Rainbow Warrior during its protest against French Nuclear Testing at Mururoa Atoll.  Maybe we can sing it next for the pernambuco 🙂 )

 

 

 

 

 

© silkannthreades

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50 thoughts on “Hear our voices

  1. shoreacres

    I loved all of the music, and learned a good bit. I confess I had no idea that Kiri Te Kanawa was from New Zealand. One of my favorite videos of all time shows her in a studio session with the great Leonard Bernstein and Jose Carreras. It’s wonderful not only for the music, but especially for the communication flowing back and forth among the musicians. I never tire of watching it – so intimate and rare.

    This is part of the reason I love the internet so. You teach me something about one of my favorite musicians, and, in turn, I get to share this little marvel with you!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      That video clip is a marvel. I love the expressions on their faces. And in connection to Bloomington and the Jacobs School of Music, did you know that Leonard Bernstein In 1982 spent six weeks at the school to work on his final opera, A Quiet Place? Then in 2009 “the school received a gift from the family of Leonard Bernstein that included the entire contents of Bernstein’s conducting studio.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jacobs_School_of_Music

      Reply
  2. utesmile

    Music is beautiful and everyone enjoys it. You do have great voices coming from New Zealand. I remember Kiri Te Kanawa a great New Zealand voice. Your country has so much to offer in every aspect. You can be proud of being there!

    Reply
  3. kurtnemes

    I didn’t realize we had a Bloomington connection. It’s where I got my bachelors degree in French literature and my masters in education (1974-1979). Many of my friends were musicians and I reveled in being able to hear concerts or performances nearly every night–either masters or doctoral recitals, one of the five symphony orchestras, the full opera season, or just walking past the music school and hearing a trumpeter practicing a melody from Petrushka. It’s still a magical place in my memory. What’s your connection to it?

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      This is great to know. I have no ‘personal’ connection with Bloomington, other than a virtual connection via bloggers. But it does sound like a magical place with its emphasis on arts and culture, particularly via the Jacobs School of Music. I wrote the post because I was intrigued by the connections between Bloomington and New Zealanders associated with music. Usually we hear about NZers at the Juilliard or at the Royal College of Music but forget that musical richness is developed in other places as well. We also forget, here, that we can look at our country’s well being in terms of our musical talents and ability, not simply on how well we perform on the rugby field or in terms of diary production!

      Reply
  4. womanseyeview

    What a great post…New information (never knew about the pernambuco tree), wonderful music (loved the male voice choir) and your own inimitable perspective – thoroughly enjoyable – thank you!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Thank you 🙂 . Isn’t it incredible to think that the fate and quality of our music can hinge on a tree and how we care for that tree and its environment?

      Reply
  5. Marylin Warner

    Wonderful! Thank you for this post! I’ve alternated playing both–again and again–as I do the handwork sewing junior Girl Scout badges on my granddaughter’s banner. It’s been an inspiring and contented time because of the music you shared.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      What a delightful image you have given me; you, handsewing and listening to our music. Do tell what badges you were sewing on to your granddaughter’s banner. For music, art, singing, nature study? I still have my badges tucked away in a box. They used to be sewn on to the uniform in my day .

      Reply
  6. vsperry

    First, my sister worked in the opera department at IU many moons ago. I had a chance to visit her one summer and help make costumes for The Flying Dutchman. Second, I loved the videos, and really felt the connection of the men’s singing to the music. Even the non-Maori kids seemed to understand the spiritual nature of the music. Very coll.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Yay, for another connection with IU! And in the opera department, too. When I was looking through the timeline of the Jacobs School of Music I did see a reference to the Flying Dutchman…..I may have spied the very production you and your sister worked on! Isn’t it wonderful when you can feel the spirituality of music? Gives me goosebumps.

      Reply
  7. Steve Schwartzman

    My little connection is that Halliday (whom you mention from Pacific Curls) is the last name of my longest-lasting friend. He and I lived around the corner from each other and met when we were about 2 years old, some 66 years ago. It just occurred to me that there’s a connection to curls, too, as will be apparent in my post tomorrow.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Well, that’s a good connection and no less slender than some of the ones that I made in my post. :D. I am now curious to see what curly tales appear in your next post.

      Reply
  8. Tiny

    Both videos were excellent. beautiful music and lovely presentation! I fully agree with you that music is a strong uniting force in the world. I love the movement “Playing for Change” that does music touring the world, and have their own music schools as well. Their 3rd CD will come out in July, but I love watching their videos as well.

    Reply
  9. earthbornliving

    loved the singing thankyou – at junior school in Uk we had a Maori teacher for a short while at our little church school(Chrstchurch) and I remember all the beautiful songs she taught us but not her name sadly…..many years ago but have always wanted to visit New Zealand as a consequence….mmm

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      How lovely that you remember the songs she taught. I am sure she would be delighted to know that and probably think that was far more important than remembering her name. 🙂 Was you little church school in a place called Christchurch?

      Reply
      1. earthbornliving

        The school was in a place called Great Warley in Essex but was demolished in about 1975 and a new one built in a different location….it was a quaint old building heated with fires…..the church is still there called Christ church.

        Reply
        1. Gallivanta Post author

          Heated with fires…now that is really something special! We had fire places in the common rooms of my old boarding school but there were other heating sources. That was in the early 1970s. We did lots of hymn singing in one of the common rooms but I don’t remember anyone teaching us Maori songs; rather sad to think that was so.

  10. 메간 Megan

    I love this post so much! It is so lovely and I’m glad you liked the card 🙂 I love living in Bloomington so much because of how much the arts and culture are appreciated here. It’s the cultural hub of the midwest. The Lotus festival is something quite special indeed! There’s always a performance of some kind somewhere in town on a given day. You do well to introduce the music of your country. I’ve always been fascinated with New Zealand’s dual-culture. I remember studying about the early childhood Te Whariki curriculum in college and loved so much how the Maori culture was incorporated into the curriculum. Anyway, in short, I love this post and appreciate it so much. 🙂
    Hope you’re well and the weather is lovely 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Isn’t it lovely that, even though we are so far apart, we have these wonderful links through music and art? And I am impressed to know that you studied the Te Whariki curriculum. We tend to be very disparaging and critical of our educational policies…at least that is how the situation appears in our media. No one mentions how some of them are studied at educational institutions outside New Zealand. Your card was in all my favourite colours and …the colours reminded me of the beautiful magnolia and blossom trees you have shared on your blog recently.

      Reply
  11. Sheryl @ Flowery Prose

    I am horribly behind on my reading and I’m afraid I have missed your birthday! Hope you enjoyed an absolutely wonderful day!

    I always delight in how you find connections between all sorts of things…it’s always interesting and fun to read your blog entries to see how the pieces all fit together.

    Greatly enjoyed the music, such beautiful voices!

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      It was a great birthday and I stretched it out for rather a long time! Glad you enjoyed the music. There were so many lovely songs from the Big Sing I had a hard time deciding on just one for the post. 🙂 Glad , too, that you think my pieces do fit together; sometimes I wonder if I stretch them a bit too far, as well. 😀

      Reply
  12. YellowCable

    Beautiful performance of both groups. I really like the hand movements along. That makes me wonder about the meaning of the songs. That is the secondary, the universal language of music moves you along mainly.

    I do not know those famous musician but I know “Lorde” or her real name is Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O’Connor though 🙂

    Reply
  13. gpcox

    A wonderful, wonderful post, Gallivanta. You have the true spirit and emotion for your country! I’m very proud to know you.

    Reply
    1. Gallivanta Post author

      Aww GP that is a very lovely comment. But isn’t it nice, for a change, to look at one’s country in terms of musical talent/interest instead of how many kilos of meat or milk the country produces?

      Reply
  14. Juliet

    Great to hear the young ones singing. My brother was a professor at Bloomington University for many years, and I could see how much that community supported the arts.

    Reply

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