New Zealand SO/Hamish McKeich. Recorded by RNZ Concert, 2 May 2007.
Anthony Young graduated from the University of Auckland with a Masters degree in composition in 2004. Since then he has had works performed by numerous orchestras and ensembles, in New Zealand and internationally. In 2004 he was the joint Composer-in-Residence with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra. He is a member of The Committee, a group of composers from Auckland producing concerts of new music from New Zealand. Anthony teaches composition at Auckland high schools, lectures at the University of Auckland School of Music, is an arranger, and has sung with the Chapman Tripp NZ Opera Chorus.
The Farewell was written while Anthony was Composer-in-Residence with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra. Anthony says, ‘I often use programmatic subjects in writing music, and when I began thinking about what this piece would be, one subject kept returning to me: the idea of saying goodbye to many things throughout our lives. All through our lives we see things disappear that are important to us. What I had specifically in mind, rather than the loss of loved ones, was the dwindling of ways of life. The fading of traditions, old practices, environments both natural and man-made, handed-down knowledge, and so on. Things we cherish and hold sacred from our childhood become relegated to history, and then forgotten on a regular basis. And the farewell to all that was what the piece was originally to be about. However in November 2003, a long-time friend died suddenly, and my thoughts were turned to my farewell to him. But I did not want to make this a requiem or an elegy. It needed to have at least some glimpse of the energy and audacity with which he lived. I have sought to bring together both the original subject, and the new. I've explored themes of resignation and resistance, reminiscence and grief, and final farewells.’