Electric, Eclectic, Acoustic

Douglas Lilburn
Lissa Meridan
Bill Manhire
The NZSO Made in New Zealand 2009 concert is inspired by Douglas Lilburn, the founding father of New


The NZSO Made in New Zealand 2009 concert is inspired by Douglas Lilburn, the founding father of New Zealand’s electroacoustic music scene, a significant genre in our musical history that has remained a mystery. Until now.

With a mixing desk on stage, award-winning poet and Victoria University professor Bill Manhire narrating, and an expert panel discussion before the concert, the NZSO brings electroacoustics, poetry and orchestra together in a celebration of New Zealand composition and performance.

Two of Douglas Lilburn’s greatest orchestral works will be performed by the NZSO, while Lilburn’s friend, Bill Manhire, narrates Three Poems of the Sea, accompanied by the NZSO’s string section and Landfall in Unknown Seas – a collaboration between Lilburn and New Zealand poet Allen Curnow, written to commemorate the tercentenary of NZ’s discovery by Abel Tasman.

Lissa Meridan, former Director of the Lilburn Electroacoustic Music Studios at Victoria University, is now based in France, but it is New Zealanders who will be the first to hear the premiere of her new work for orchestra with electroacoustic sound.

Commissioned for the NZSO, a quiet fury, captures the energy, fury and mysterious melodies of the background noises of Paris. This work will have the NZSO’s percussionists working hard - Meridan’s score includes thundersheets, bullroarers (at least 10), a lion’s roar, maracas, sizzle cymbals and a large gong, as well as the full power of the NZSO.

Made in New Zealand also premieres NZ School of Music Lecturer Jack Body’s new work, My Name is Mok Bhon and features Blue Kisses Green, a work by current Director of the Lilburn Electroacoustic Music Studios, Dugal McKinnon, about elemental ferociousness, delicacy and beauty.

At the end of the performance members of the audience are invited to stay on to listen to a selection of New Zealand Electroacoustic works as part of a third act of this concert.

MADE IN NEW ZEALAND – Sponsored by Victoria University of Wellington
Friday 29th May 6.30pm, Wellington Town Hall
New Zealand Symphony Orchestra

Bill Manhire – Narrator
Hamish McKeich – Conductor
Michael Norris - Electroacoustics

Douglas Lilburn: Landfall in Unknown Seas (narrated by Bill Manhire)
Lissa Meridan: a quiet fury 
Douglas Lilburn: Three Poems of the Sea (narrated by Bill Manhire)
Jack Body: My Name is Mok Bhon
Dugal McKinnon: Blue Kisses Green

Written by

The Big Idea Editor

21 Apr 2009

The Big Idea Editor

Keith and Christian. Image: Keith Wagstaff ACS
Christian Wagstaff and Keith Courtney have transformed the CBD into a seemingly endless labyrinth of possibilities. Here, they share the inspiration behind creating their evocative installations.
These Two: Liam and Kevin
Actor and screen-writer Liam Coleman challenges the phantom that sows the seeds of self-doubt.
NestFest hero
A brand-new music festival is set to liven up the Hawkes Bay this summer. Canvassing a fresh line-up of fledgling musicians, Nest Fest steers away from the archetypal lairy drum and bass.
Queen Kapussi by Hohua Ropate Kurene
Some very bright and beautiful stars left us this week. Janet McAllister bids them farewell, and shares more news from Aotearoa's art world.