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Te Moana

Programme Note

This piece was commissioned by The Royal New Zealand Navy Band based in Auckland, to celebrate its 75th centenary in 2016. It was written for an anniversary CD recording as well as live performance.

Te Moana translates to 'The sea', and is inspired not just by this but also by the history of the Navy, and its crew who have faced many challenges over the years. The sea holds a special place in New Zealand culture, from the first arrivals on waka approximately 800 years ago, right through to recent missions undertaken by the Navy. Drowning at sea is sometimes referred to as the 'New Zealand death', and this piece begins with a short memorial for sailors lost in the line of duty. Following this, the music speeds up and captures the energy and bold spirit of the Navy. This spirit pervades the rest of the piece. A quieter second theme provides contrast, and contemplates the vastness and beauty of the sea, enlivened with sea birds.

This composition was supported by The University of Otago.

Dedicated to The Royal New Zealand Navy Band

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