Composer’s Note

She like the moon arises was composed in 2004 for the Grevillea Ensemble, with Guest Artist, Diana Doherty (oboe). The work is a setting of James McAuley’s poem of the same name, published in 1946.

Comprising three sections, the score begins with a calm nocturnal atmosphere with plaintive oboe calls and a tranquil, lyrical music about the moon and stars. Simple, sustained arpeggios accompany the voice.

The central section of the work, scored for oboe and piano, is a response to McAuley’s image of “the exquisite circumspection of the stars treading the heavenly floor”. The musical ideas in this section include a “music-box” style piano figuration and an oboe solo featuring emotive, yearning phrases of disjunct intervals.

The final section of the work begins with solo voice (“And insolent hope surprises my sole heart”). Piano tremolos enter to accompany a pairing of voice and oboe and the work builds to a climax which reflects on the spurious glimmer of a dawn upon the infinite, the nevermore.

Grateful acknowledgement is made of HarperCollins Publishers for allowing me to set James McAuley’s poem to music. Also, my sincere thanks is extended to the Grevillea Ensemble and Guest Artist, Diana Doherty, for giving the premiere performance of the work.

Matthew Orlovich,

Score Sample

Score Sample: She like the moon arises (for soprano, oboe & piano) | By Matthew Orlovich


She like the moon arises
(for soprano, oboe & piano)

For availability of PDF score & parts, contact Matthew Orlovich.

Score Details

She like the moon arises


Soprano, oboe & piano

James McAuley

c. 9 minutes

2004: Grevillea Ensemble (Wendy Dixon, soprano; David Miller, piano) with Guest Artist Diana Doherty, oboe @ Crows Nest Performing Arts Centre, 6 Holtermann Street, Crows Nest, NSW, Australia.

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