25 Nov 2016

JULIET PALMER: Swerve

From Resound, 10:03 pm on 25 November 2016

New Zealand SO/Kenneth Young. Recorded by RNZ Concert, 20 September 2011.

Juliet Palmer

Juliet Palmer Photo: supplied

New Zealand-Canadian composer Juliet Palmer is known as a “post-modernist with a conscience” (The Listener) whose work “crosses so many genres as to be in a category of its own” (Toronto Star). Juliet is the artistic director of Urbanvessel, a platform for interdisciplinary collaboration. Based in Toronto since 1998, Juliet’s work has been featured around the world with performances at: New York’s Lincoln Center, London’s Southbank Centre, the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Bath International Festival, Voix Nouvelles France, Italy’s Angelica Festival, Evenings of New Music Bratislava, Musica Ficta Festival Lithuania, NYYD Festival Estonia, The Istanbul Festival, Soundculture Japan, the Adelaide Festival, the New Zealand International Arts Festival and Canada’s Sound Symposium. Juliet was the 2011/12 Creative New Zealand/Jack C. Richards composer-in-residence at the New Zealand School of Music and the 2012 composer-in-residence of Orchestra Wellington. Juliet holds a PhD in composition from Princeton University and an M.Mus in performance, composition and time-based art from Auckland University.

"Writing Swerve began as an exercise in reading. A poem caught my ear and lulled me with its rhythm: lilting and stalling, flowing and overflowing the bounds of the line. Just as there are an infinite number of readers, so are there infinite ways of reading a poem. I wanted to capture these subtle variations of interpretation. The words which constitute poetry can be simple and familiar, but new meanings jump out unexpectedly from one reading to the next. I imagined a piece of music which travelled with the reader: pressing forward, pausing, repeating, circling back...a process of rereading in which certain images start to resound, gaining clarity with each recurrence. Poetry doesn't reveal itself on the first reading. It is not until we reach the end of the music that we begin to understand what captivates us." - Juliet Palmer