Songs of Home

Brooks, J., McGuinness, D. and Stephens, M. (2019) Songs of Home. [Website]

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These films were made at Dalkeith Palace, Midlothian, Scotland, to accompany the exhibition ‘Songs of Home’ at the Museum of Sydney (August-November 2019), curated by Matthew Stephens. The music spans a range of repertoire that amateur and professional musicians of different classes knew and experienced at home in Britain, and that emigrants to Australia took in their minds and luggage to their new homes. At Dalkeith Palace, extracts from opera and from elaborate arrangements of Scottish traditional song represent the sounds of aristocratic drawing rooms of the Gordon and Buccleuch families. Many of these pieces were transported to Australia in the manuscript music books of Georgiana McCrae, who grew up at Gordon Castle and emigrated to Australia in 1840. One song was filmed in the icehouse at Dalkeith Palace to evoke the lives of servants and other workers on large Scottish estates, many of whom emigrated to Australia. The strikingly resonant space of the ice house must have been as fascinating to early nineteenth century visitors as it is to us today, and we imagine that workers going about their business in the ice house might have been tempted to try their voices in this strange and beautiful acoustic environment.

Item Type:Website
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:McGuinness, Professor David
Authors: Brooks, J., McGuinness, D., and Stephens, M.
Subjects:M Music and Books on Music > M Music
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Culture and Creative Arts > Music

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
303850Songs of Home & Distant Isles:Musical Soundscapes of Australia and Britain,1788-1860 AH/S003126/1David McGuinnessArts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)518909101 8400Arts - Music