Commissioned by The Sydney Children’s Choir, The Paean draws its text from the evocative poem of the same title by Australian poet, Roland Robinson.
The poet describes a scene in which desert stars blaze in fires blue and cold.
East, the bounding line of earth
quickens, runs with livid gold.
Dark, the circling regions lie:
ache of gibber-plain, the yawn
of barren, ravined ranges while
the bore-head smokes into the dawn.
The climax of the choir piece arrives when, from the hollowed purple plain, clamour wakens shrill and loud.
“In their thousands rise the birds streaming in a far dark cloud. On the burning east that host soars, then bursts in shrill, prolonged crescendo, there, the molten gold with the showering birds is thronged. …”