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Ian Dando

New Zealand city. Known colloquially as the Choral City, Christchurch developed a strong choral tradition from its settlement by the English in 1851. The pioneering Canterbury Vocal Union became the nucleus of the Royal Christchurch Musical Society, founded in 1860. In 1927 Victor Peters started the Christchurch Harmonic Society. With two large choirs competing for a similar audience, amalgamation into the 160-strong Christchurch City Choir in ...

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(b Sydney, Aug 3, 1928). Australian double bass player . His father was a saxophonist who served as mayor of Christchurch, New Zealand, and president of New Zealand’s musicians’ union; other members of his family were musical as well. Christie studied medicine at Otago University (BM ...

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Graham Hair and Greta Mary Hair

(b Sydney, Jan 19, 1945). Australian composer, conductor and teacher. She studied English and French at the Australian National University (BA 1966) and music with Larry Sitsky at the Canberra School of Music; later she studied at the Kodály Institute in Hungary (Diploma of Music Education ...

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Philip L. Scowcroft

(b Sydney, Sept 26, 1866; d London, Nov 17, 1951). British pianist and composer of Australian birth. He came to London in 1889 after touring as a pianist in Asia and Australasia and appeared as an accompanist in England before concentrating on composition. He also wrote music criticism for ...

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Derek Coller

(b Melbourne, Australia, Feb 21, 1931). Australian trombonist and bandleader . Originally a brass-band musician, from 1948 he led his own semiprofessional jazz bands, the Jazz Bandits (1948–50) and the Jazz Kings (1950–62). He began playing professionally in 1962 as a member of the Melbourne New Orleans Jazz Band, which visited England in ...

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Alan Blyth

(b Ballarat, April 16, 1927; d London, Dec 7, 1971). Australian soprano. She studied in Melbourne, making her début there in 1954 as Santuzza, then touring as Magda in The Consul. After further study in Milan and London, she joined the Covent Garden company in ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Port Elizabeth, Oct 22, 1946; d London, February 18, 2012). Irish soprano of South African birth. She studied at the London Opera Centre, making her début in 1972 as a mezzo-soprano at Wexford as Varvara (Kát'a Kabanová). With Australian Opera (...

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Michael Barkl

(b Sydney, Aug 27, 1944). Australian composer. After initial involvement in music as a jazz pianist, he studied at the University of Sydney (MA, 1965–9), where his teachers included Sculthorpe (composition), with Takemitsu on a Churchill Fellowship to Japan (1970), and at the University of Melbourne (DMus ...

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Alice M. Moyle and Stephen A. Wild

An Australian Aboriginal dance with music, generally performed publicly; the same word may denote an Aboriginal occasion on which public singing and dancing take place. Pronounced with the emphasis on the second syllable, the term probably originated (perhaps with different emphasis) in an Aboriginal language of New South Wales in the latter part of the 18th century, although it now has a wider currency among non-Aboriginal Australians than among Aborigines. The words ‘boojery carib-berie’ (‘good dance’) appear in John Hunter's ...

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Bruce Johnson

(b Emmaville, Australia, Sept 10, 1904; d Sydney, 6 or April 7, 1979). Australian bandleader, trombonist, trumpeter, arranger, and singer. From 1922 he worked in Sydney and Melbourne in the bands, among others, of Bill James (1923), Frank Ellis (1924...

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David Tunley

(b Sydney, Feb 1, 1931). Australian musicologist, music critic and conductor. He graduated from the University of Queensland with the BA in 1964 and founded the department of music at the University of New South Wales, Sydney, in 1966 (the university first offered music as an interdisciplinary study before it established an institute of practical studies and music education). He took the doctorate at New South Wales in ...

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J.M. Thomson

(b Wellington, Oct 13, 1944). New Zealand composer. He came from a strong Salvation Army background, and began his extensive musical studies at Victoria University of Wellington with Frederick Page and Douglas Lilburn (BMus 1968) and continued with a Commonwealth Scholarship, at Toronto University (MMus ...

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Laurence Libin

(b Napier, New Zealand, May 14, 1946). Intermedia artist whose transdisciplinary practice includes video/sound work and installations, experimental instruments, graphic scores, and improvisation. He studied at Elam School of Fine Arts, Auckland (DipFA Hons, 1971) and the University of West Sydney, Nepean (MA Hons, ...

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Michael Hannan

Tragic opera in one act by James Penberthy to a libretto bv Mary Durack after her novel Keep him my Country; Perth, Australia, Somerville Auditorium, 22 January 1959.

Dalgerie (soprano), an aboriginal woman with leprosy, waits to see her former white lover and employer, Stan (baritone), before she dies. There is a series of flashbacks to the events leading to the present. Because a marriage between Dalgerie and Stan is forbidden by tribal law, she performs love magic to ensure that ‘though they may be parted in life, their spirits can be united in death’. Dalgerie resists tribal love rituals (played by a band of aborigines) and Stan tries to take her away from them, but she realizes that she now belongs to Julunggal, the snake. Dalgerie leaves the district and spreads a rumour that she has died. In their final meeting she reassures Stan that they will be reunited, and then dies in his arms. Penberthy’s score makes use of driving rhythmic and melodic ideas from aboriginal music, combined with his own romantic idiom that he feels is a response to the mystical and melancholic qualities of the Australian landscape. ...

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Andrew D. McCredie and Samantha Owens

(b Sydney, Australia, April 16, 1887; d Brisbane, Australia, July 31, 1959). Australian conductor, composer, and music collector. He studied with Arthur Mason and Gordon Lavers in Sydney. In 1912 he was appointed organist and choir director at Christ Church Anglican Cathedral and conductor of the choral society in Grafton, New South Wales. After war service he went to London for further study with Frederick Bridge, R.R. Terry, and Charles W. Pearce. He returned to Australia in ...

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Bruce Johnson and Roger T. Dean

(b Freeling, nr Gawler, Australia, Oct 25, 1914; d Adelaide, South Australia, March 24, 2003). Australian composer, bandleader, pianist, arranger, and trombonist. He was first exposed to jazz through recordings, notably those of Duke Ellington. In 1945 he took over the leadership of the Southern Jazz Group, a dixieland band in Adelaide, and in ...

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Elizabeth Forbes

(b Melbourne, Sept 29, 1950). Australian countertenor. He studied in Brisbane and made his début in 1974 at Vadstena, Sweden, in Provenzale’s La Stellidaura vendicata. He has sung with Scottish Opera, at Berne, Amsterdam, Venice, Innsbruck, Paris, Geneva, Munich, Buxton and Lausanne. His repertory includes Monteverdi’s ...

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Bruce Johnson

(b Sydney, Aug 22, 1943). Australian bandleader, drummer, composer, and arranger. He first played in pop groups, then from 1959 worked in nightclubs and recording studios. After touring in the USA with the singer Kirby Stone, Si Zentner, and Buddy DeFranco (1967–8...

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Alan Blyth

(b Adelaide, Jan 31, 1882; d Sydney, Sept 26, 1961). Australian bass-baritone. He studied at home with J.C. Stevens, then in England with Charles Santley, singing to him at an audition Handel’s ‘O ruddier than the cherry’, which became one of his calling cards over the next 50 years. Santley arranged Dawson’s first concert tour of Britain, with Emma Albani, in ...

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Carlos María Solare

(b Brisbane, Oct 23, 1961). Australian composer and viola player. He studied viola in his home town before moving to Berlin in 1984. There he became a member of the Berlin PO, in which he played from 1985–2000. As a composer, Dean was almost entirely autodidact, except for a study of 20th-century compositional techniques that he took as part of his Bachelor of Music training. He started composing in ...