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The Undercurrent

The Undercurrent is a work for unaccompanied double bass, composed in 2022 and premiered by Michael McNamara in Music Workshop at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music on the 4th of November 2023.

Duration: c. 4 minutes, 40 seconds.


An undercurrent refers to a current of water below the surface that moves in an alternate direction from the surface current. Additionally, it refers to an underlying emotion or influence that is not openly expressed - rather being hidden beneath. The work represents the idea of these underlying emotions, and tension simmering beneath the surface - a surface which we attempt to keep placid, despite
any turbulence that lies below.

The piece originated from a shorter solo work, which was written for a workshop with musicians from Opera Australia on the 19th of October 2021, which resulted in the development and expansion of the solo throughout 2021, before being completed in 2022.


Michael McNamara, October 19, 2023. Music Workshop Hall, Sydney, Australia. International Premiere.

Price: $35

Download Score Sample

View a sample of the sheet music.


View a video of a performance and listen to the work.

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