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Her Inner Voice

Celebrate International Women’s Day with Arafura Music Collective, as talented musicians present The Inner Voice, a chamber music performance set in the NT Supreme Court celebrating the creative power of women composers.

By Tierney Seccull

Featuring works by Clara Schumann, Caroline Shaw and Rebecca Clarke, Australian composer Emily Sheppard, and Darwin’s own Netanela Mizrahi, The Inner Voice delights and informs through the power of female voices, and the connections they craft through sharing their inner creative voice.

Last year, Mizrahi penned Hayashida Chizu, a piece inspired by a woman believed to be the first Japanese person buried in the Territory.

“Hayashida Chizu arrived in the Northern Territory from Japan in 1981. I learnt of her story through Bronwyn Dann’s exhibition, Harvesting Moonlight, and visited her grave near my home,” Mizrahi says.

“We know so little about Hayashida Chizu, and even her name was not written correctly on her grave. Writing this piece allowed me to bring one small gesture of justice to a woman whose name was not honoured. I chose to use my platform to voice her name.”

In a world where the gender scales remain tipped much to one side, opportunities to showcase the work of female composers and musicians shouldn’t be passed up, nor should chances to amplify female stories.

Mizrahi started playing music at just five years of age, but didn’t play a female-composed piece until her adult years.

“Even after many years of writing music, it took me a long time to feel at home with a composer identity. I know that women have been creators of music throughout history, but their voices are so often erased from history. As a composer, I feel empowered to use my voice but it took courage to take on this identity when it was not visible to me,” she says.

If you’re reading this, feeling the weight of the injustice of it all, there’s something you can do.

“Being in the audience for this show is an act of justice! You will get to use your own voice for healing and reconciliation. And you will hear diverse voices that are worthy of our attention.

“There is wisdom in the voice of the minority. I want to hear music by people of all genders, and I want young people to see this, to know that their voices are valued and needed in our society.”

The iconic setting of the NT Supreme Court lends itself to chamber music, the acoustics and sprawling heights making it a delight to perform in, in addition to the significance of why the space exists.

“A Supreme Court should be a space for the highest form of justice. The arts have an important role to play in all spheres that call for justice, too. How amazing that our Supreme Court has sublime acoustics for chamber music?”

The Inner Voice - The Music of Women Composers
WHEN SUN 12 MAR | 5–6.15PM
COST $42 | $35 CONC | $10 YOUTH FREE U12

Inset: Netanela Mizrahi

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