A compelling introduction
opera 'Lindy' -
'... beautifully lyrical, distinctly Australian music ...'
This recording release from ABC Classics documents Opera Australia's production in 2002 of the opera Lindy by Australian composer Moya Henderson (born 1941), with a libretto by Judith Rodriguez. This opera had a complex history -- having been a long time in gestation and then shelved by the opera company after the score was delivered in 1997. It was finally premièred in 2002 in a heavily cut, but still excellent version.
Henderson is one of the leading Australian composers of her generation. She studied at the University of Queensland, and began her professional career as composer-in-residence to the Australian Opera in its 1973 season. Thus, right from the beginning of her career, Henderson had a close interaction with the musical stage and the practical aspects of writing for it. This sort of 'apprenticeship' is an ideal circumstance for the development of any opera composer. After this year, Henderson traveled to Cologne, Germany where she studied composition with Mauricio Kagel and Karlheinz Stockhausen. She wrote musical theater works for the Darmstadt Festival under Kagel's direction. Henderson has lived in Australia since 1976 where she has been an active free-lance composer. She has written a large amount of concert music and theater pieces. Lindy is her only grand opera to date -- although she is currently working on her next one, based on the book Their Eyes Were Watching God by African-American author Zora Neale Hurston.
The story of Lindy is that of the highly-publicized Azaria Chamberlain court case in Australia in 1980. Michael and Lindy Chamberlain were accused and convicted of having murdered their infant daughter Azaria during a vacation to the Australian landmark of Uluru (Ayers Rock). Lindy and Michael always claimed that the baby had been killed by a rogue dingo, packs of which roam around Uluru.
Copyright © 15 October 2005
Carson P Cooman, Pittsburgh USA