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Nga Whetu e WhituFor Flute and PianoBy Gareth Farr
Shifting between haunting and dextrous, Nga Whetu e Whitu is a captivating and challenging duo performance piece. Farr cites the tonal and harmonic devices of Messiaen as an influtence in writing Nga Whetu e Whitu, and this is evident in the nocturnal stillness of the solo piano in the opening moments. The chromatic shadings of the work are brought into sharp relief as the flute enters with a winding lyrical passage, soon leading into faster, swirling lines that are passed between the two instruments. The wave-like sontours contract into quivering trills and expand into grand sweeps before the movement eventually settles, reprising the dark tranquility of its beginnings. The shorter, more overtly rhythmic second movements picks from the more turbulent material of the first movement, galloping through its lively interplay in compound meter.