The classical music entrepreneur, Musica Viva Australia, has been a major part of my life since I became its Artistic Director in 2000. Its CEO, Mary Jo Capps, is directly responsible for giving me that role in the first place, and for keeping me at it since then.
In October 2014, five days after I turned 60, so did Mary Jo, and I thought composing a new work in her honour would be an appropriate way to mark the occasion. MJ had recently moved to Balmain in Sydney’s “inner west”, and her Facebook feed was rapidly populated with pictures of her morning journey to work on the harbour ferry, as she nestled into her new urban environment. This gave me the rare opportunity to write music with a story, and Harbour Reverie traces a typical morning in her new life, imagining the passing sights and states of mind as she prepared for the day ahead.
That month the Borodin Quartet was in the middle of a national concert tour for Musica Viva, and the group generously agreed to perform Harbour Reverie at a private function in Sydney on the 12th of October. Surprising even me, the Borodins went on to give the public premiere two days later at the Melbourne Recital Centre, as the encore to the last concert of their tour, which was broadcast nationally on ABC radio’s Classic-FM.
I arranged this version of the work for violin and piano so it could be premiered by violinist Ray Chen, accompanied by Timothy Young, at the Huntington Estate Music Festival in Mudgee, Australia, on 28 November 2014.
Carl Vine, November 2014