Saturday night is going to be a totally epic night as Synthony kicks off in Auckland. DJ + vocalists + choir + symphony orchestra + an incredible visual feast which I’m not sure the Town Hall has ever seen before.
“Leave your Nan at home, THIS IS NOT AN ORCHESTRA AS YOU KNOW IT or a sit down affair… this an event you will lose your sh*t at.”
And yes, the rumours are true, I’ll be up the back thrashing the tambourine and caressing the thunder sheet as part of our impressive percussion section.
But, it’s been quite a journey leading up to this, and I haven’t actually posted much about it, so here’s a run down.
Back in October 2015 Rhian Sheehan asked me to help out on the music he was writing for a new rollercoaster ride at Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi. Yesterday it all came to fruition with five hours of recording down in Wellington with some of NZ’s finest musicians.
There was a 10-piece brass section and 19-piece string section from Stroma FilmWorks. Absolute credit must go to these amazing musicians who perform at such an incredible level, yet between cues are so friendly and enjoyable to work with. Continue reading “Recording Mission Ferrari”
This year as part of the Auckland Philharmonia education programme, a new initiative was their ‘Bring It Together’ day. This was where students from many of their partner schools, and of very different abilities, came together for a few hours to make music alongside APO musicians.
While conducting the wind band at the recent Bay of Plenty Music School I finally had the chance to test using digital scores. I’ve always been intrigued – have already blogged about it twice – but only with a new iPad have I had the chance of taking the full digital leap. Here are my thoughts…
An iPad Air 2 sits, charged, ready for action. I already had some of the scores as PDFs which was a great start. Then I scanned the rest using Scanner Pro which kindly then drops the file into my Dropbox. Then in comes forScore – a sheet music reader app and the absolute hero of the equation – I import the files straight from Dropbox and then it’s all ready to go.
Have you got some little scallywags intrigued by music? And perhaps rainbows? You’d better get them along to the APO’s latest concert for pre-schoolers, “Rainbow Connection”.
I’ve been working away at the arrangements and it’s going to be a great show. Here’s what this show is about:
The colours of the rainbow are so pretty in the sky! The Little Rainbow is especially lucky, because he can wear all of them at once. But one sad day the colours disappear and the Little Rainbow just cannot find them anywhere. He asks his friends, the Rainbow Sea Creature troupe and four APO musicians, who each have one colour, to come and help him…
Here’s an update on happenings over the last little while – mostly other people’s successes that I played a small part in.
It was great to see a recent post on the SOUNZ Facebook page about the recording of Robert Burch’s “Essay to the memory of Dmitri Shostakovich” in Wellington (photo above) by Richard Mapp (piano) and Andrew Joyce (cello). I typeset this back in January for SOUNZ and I can’t wait to hear how it has come together with these two amazing performers.
Back on October 30th was the annual APRA Silver Scroll awards and it was a huge pleasure to have worked on the scores of two of the finalists for the SOUNZ Contemporary Award – “Inner Phases” (for the Forbidden City Chamber Orchestra and the NZ String Quartet) by Michael Norris and “Solstice” (recorded by the NZSO) by Leonie Holmes. Congrats to Michael for taking the title! Also, Victoria Kelly well-deservedly won best score for “Field Punishment No.1” – a score I worked on through the night, tucked up in an Auckland hotel – long story.
Ah yes, the lines for every Polkadots song still resonate in my head. In fact throughout the concert both my wife and I knew every word. I guess we had heard it hundreds of times at home as I worked on the arrangements.
Last Saturday was the first of the Polkadots “Magic Carpet” shows. It really was something quite special. While I’ve written a lot of arrangements – never a whole show for a pro orchestra with singing, dancing and narration.
Over the last few weeks I have been orchestrating and arranging the music of the Polkadots and writing some new material for their show, Magic Carpet Ride, with the Auckland Philharmonia in March.
There are eight pieces in total for my contribution, each varies greatly in style from Caribbean, salsa, lullaby, Maori, ballad, storytelling, blues, and more – making it loads of fun to bring to life with the orchestra.