Maiden Voyage: Australian Women-Their Stories and History Told through Song

Australian Journal of Music Education, January 2016 | Go to article overview

Maiden Voyage: Australian Women-Their Stories and History Told through Song


Maiden Voyage is a cycle of 13 songs written by Lorraine Milne.

The lyric content of Maiden Voyage traces the experiences and achievements of ordinary and extraordinary Australian women in historical and contemporary settings.

The music reflects Lorraine's background as a classically trained musician overlaid with her deep love of jazz and experience as a theatre composer.

The stories woven through Maiden Voyage embrace the forming of Australia as an island continent, convicts and prostitutes, free settlers, currency born, the fight for female suffrage, English migration between the two world wars, survival in the outback, the cultural drain, the Vietnam war, GDP and what is valued. It concludes with a celebration of the legacy given to us from these extraordinary women, many of whom were not recognised in their lifetimes for their achievements.

"What a rich and diverse history of Australian women has been captured in this music. And it's a song cycle, unified by its music and text. It's accessible and real." (Associate Professor Neryl Jeanneret, Melbourne University Graduate School of Education)

NEW in 2016: Music Resource Kit for secondary students by Julie Montague

The intention of the Study Guide is to explore the creative process of musical composition by:

* tracing the narrative of this song cycle;

* exploring the musical setting of the stories;

* observing the stylistic characteristics in this contemporary song cycle;

* recognizing compositional devices employed in the song cyle. …

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