2022 was a year that sparked inspiration for me. I am not talking about just one spark either, but a series that beautifully led me to the creation of my piece. After seeing the 2022 MetSO program it was evident that it lightly using the Brass players, and I knew they were feeling a bit underutilised. Which sparked the first idea in my mind to write a piece that would take full advantage of their skills, and heavily use brass instruments. The program coincided with the 45th Anniversay of the Orchestra which started it life as the Karrinyup Symphony Orchestra. Rekindling the orchestra’s relationship with the City of Stirling and returning to the City of Stirling as a rehearsal venue in 2023, was another spark of inspiration which led me towards the piece’s naming… the ‘Karrinyup Fanfare’. The last spark of inspiration was a query inside my mind. The opening of the piece contrasts two somewhat conflicting meanings of the word Karrinyup. During an Aboriginal Studies unit, I discovered that Karrinyup is a Noongar word that translates to “the place where there are spiders”. However, this differs from the City of Stirling official meaning of the name Karrinyup on the website. It states the word means “the place where Kangaroos drink”, possibly because it sounds much more pleasant and doesn’t inspire the fear that spiders often do. It was this contrary interpretation of the word ‘Karrinyup’ which provided the final spark of inspiration I needed for this composition. You see, when you listen to the opening, the theme jumps up and down through the horns, and represents the Kangaroo – Yongka. Whilst as the fanfare continues, you will notice the second theme – the crawling strings represent the spider – Kar. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did creating it. May it, and this new year, spark inspiration for you.
Wirrangintungiyil – Eric Avery
It’s NAIDOC week in Australia, where we celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture as a vital and important part of Australian culture. There is a strong culture of music in Aboriginal culture – in their beliefs they talk about songlines – the paths across the sky and sometimes the land that mark the route followed by creator-beings during the Dreaming. As such, it is unsurprising that there is a group of musicians who are breaching the gap between traditional Aboriginal music and Western Art Music, and using this new medium to share their stories and culture.
Eric Avery is a Ngiyampaa, Yuin, Bandjalang and Gumbangirr artist. Formally trained in Dance (NAISDA Dance college and a mentorship at The Australian Ballet) and Music (Bachelor of Music from the Australian Institute of Music), he combines his skills on the violin to perform classical music and create new contemporary music that expresses his Koori (NSW Aboriginal) heritage. He works with his family’s custodial songs, reviving them and continuing the age old legacy of singing in his tribe.
Galinga (water song) is an incredibly emotive piece that incorporates Avery’s native tongue with traditional violin playing and looping textures to create a rich tapestry that evokes a babbling brook.
In Wirrangintungiyil, Avery performs with his father on Didgeridoo, utilising a healing lullaby that he learned from recordings of the King Family. Avery talks about how utilising native languages has been transformative and healing for him in reclaiming his culture.
ABC Classic FM has a fantastic page highlighting a number of stories and performances around Indigenous performers and composers that is well worth checking out.