Aristea Mellos Preludes and Duets: Stephanie McCallum and Erin Helyard ABCL0036D (2022)

At the heart of the album is a cycle of twelve preludes, each inspired by fragments of poetry, found texts or iconic phrases. Like Chopin and Debussy before her, Mellos uses the small scale of the prelude form to create whole worlds of emotion and beauty. The album also features the four-hand piano work Immigrant Suite, honouring the life story of Mellos’ maternal grandmother, who left war-torn Europe as a young woman and emigrated to New Zealand and then to Australia as a post-war refugee.

Preludes: Book I for solo piano

I. “A ghostly finger writes forgotten words (in the dust on the piano)” 2. II. “Whoever you are, no matter how lonely…” 3. III. “In the sun born over and over, I ran my heedless ways” 4. IV. “I can’t breathe” Part One 5. V. “I can’t breathe” Part Two 6. VI. “Me cansé de vivir me caso”

7. VII. “…the magpies call you Jack and whistle…” 8. VIII. “Let water run circle settle be” 9. IX. “Caution! Endangered shorebirds are nesting” 10. X. “Go to sleep my beloved, whilst I sing you a lullaby…” (Djoko’s Lullaby) 11. XI. “Death is black” – XII. “Then peace to close the weary storm-wrecked years”

Stephanie McCallum piano

Immigrant Suite for four-hands piano 12. I. The S.S. Goya 13. II. Six O'Clock Swill 14. III. Short Ride on a Sewing Machine 15. IV. The Villa Mimosa 16. V. Murmurs of the Heart

Stephanie McCallum & Erin Helyard piano