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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 82

Exhibition inaugural cantata: New Zealand Industrial Arts Exhibition 1885. A lyrical ode, upon the love, the aim, and triumphs of labour

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Inaugural Cantata

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Afar in the dim and remotely obscure
Depths of earth's primaeval ages,
(Close companion with wolf, fox, and fierce cave-bear,)
Wild—ruthless with ferocious ravin and rage
Beamed and read early Man Nature's pages;
Founded deep in the depths of his being
As earth's storms remorseless, his passions endure,
As idly on wanders he from lair to lair.

Picture this being I whose shaggy bare breast
Bears its front to the fierce glacial blast,
Clad in scanty adornment of bear-skin and bronze
His keen eye o'er the wild landscape cast
In swift glance to search out his foe or his prey,
Bent on battle or capture ere seeks he his rest.

* * * * * * * *

Hath magnanimous feeling within him its shrine
In aught of his mingled emotions,
'Midst Nature's relentless and terrible powers,
And tempest's wild, rudest commotions? —
Aught save semi-human alone can we trace
In that form; now, long since, deem'd divine.

Were wife-love, and home-love, in fondness then blended
In humane and holiest feeling?
O woman, sweet woman I with mercy must tell
Tragic tale, to Man's heart appealing,
Of every known crime and wrong meekly endured
Nor yet hath her subjection ended !

How long, Oh, how long ! in fell bondage she pined—
This clinging fair creature to Man !
With a name more than that of heav'n-bom "friend,"
Most celestial and dear in the plan
Of God's gifts, stands this fairest being
Of chastely and true soul and mind !

Man's first strife arose against Nature's array
Of powers adverse to his being;
A struggle productive of fierce tribal wars,—
No two savage races agreeing :
From brave mothers' breasts was thus early imbibed
A spirit of bloodshed and scourging affray.

* * * * * * * *

Thou mighty Element of Fire !
Whence came that noble man of yore
To kindle first thy mystic flame.
Thy countless purposes explore !
Who aroused Man from Cimmerian dreams
To progress, peace, and science to aspire."

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IntroductionAndante Maestoso, Adagio Marziale, and Allegro cen brioOrchestra.

I—Opening ChorusAndante Maestoso.

Ye men of every land tongue ! unite with joy to-day
In emulative zeal and hope, to freely tribute pay
To Industry's ennobling shrine inaugurated here,
In fair New Zealand's Colony, where glorious appear
Rich stores of arts industrial, of mahkind's rarest choice,
That tell of Labour's lofty aims with deep and mighty voice.

II.—Basso Solo (Allegro con fuoco)—Mr, J. Prouse.

(Orchestral accompaniment.)

How swiftly may the head conceive,—conceive in vain a plan,
If many willing, cunning hands, uniting to a man.
Refuse from lack of labour's love to work, but idly find
In some ignoble pastime, sport for body and for mind.
To labour is the lot of Man : his works his lasting fame:
Ten thousand varied monuments perpetuate his name;
From Time's remotest era Man, by dint of earnest toil,
Hath wrought his steadfast upward way with sweat and weary moil;

III—Contralto Solo (Andante con moto)—Miss Parsons.

(Orchestral accompaniment.)

And earth, kind mother earth, ne'er fails to well perform her part.
Where Man with dauntless will e'er strives with brain and gallant heart
To make the arid desert bloom and blossom as the rose,
While swift-directing mind and hand their mighty tasks dispose;
Promoting beatific peace and plenty through the world
Where'er our glorious Standard waves, triumphantly unfurl'd !

Symphony.—(Litroduction to Prayer)—Orchestra.

IV.—Abia (Prayer), Soprano (Andante religiose)—Miss Randall.

(violoncello obligato, Mr. C. S. Thomas, and organ accompaniment, Mr. Robert Parker.)

Eternal Father ! Ruler Supreme, we Thee adore !
Thy Holy Name we here invoke, and dedicate
All these, the tributes of our labour, freely unto Thee.

V.—Quartette Refrain—Miss Randall, Miss Parsons, Mr, E. J. Hill, and Mr. J. Prouse.

Eternal Father 1 Ruler Supreme, we Thee adore !

VI—Contralto Solo (Allegretto Appassionato)—Miss Parsons.

(Organ accompaniment.)

Imbue oar lives, inspire our souls with Thy Divine purity !

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VII.—Semi and Full Chorus (Andante Spiritoso.)

With cherubim and seraphim we praise Thee, O God Almighty Father!
Omnific Deity, we bow before Thee, Eternal Omnipresent, Deity !

VIII.—Aria, Soprano (Larghetto religioso com molto espres)—Mrs. Parsons.

[unclear: Colonocelli] Obligati—Messrs. C. S. Thomas and A. H. Hamerton.

(Organ accompaniment.)

"Each moment is Thy Presence felt and known,
Each power of mind, each thought that, upward flown,
Becomes the messenger of peace and love.
But links our souls to the great Mind above.
All life is but the breath of the great Soul
That works in space; through His divine control
Each atom is outwrought, and every sphere
Rolls on throughout eternity's vast year."

IX. Full Chorus (the foregoing stanza and con spirito) movement)—Finale to Prayer.

"'Tis life, 'tis breath, 'tis Spirit, it is God !
And all the angels by that path have trod—
Up, up the heights, where, bathed in Living day,
They drink the endless breath of love alway."

X.—Exhibition March (Orchestra and Organ).

XI—Bravura, Tenor (Andante con spirito)—Mr. E. J. Hill.

(Orchestral and Organ accompaniment.)

Arise I New Zealand, take thy course through ages on to fame.
Attaining 'mongst earth's greater Powers a bright illustrious name.


XII.—Semi and Full Chorus (Allegro con brio.)

Scion of a Mighty Empire! while by noble deeds ye rise.
The emblems of all virtues rare, 'neath earth's cerulean skies,
The sweet, the manly of our race shall surely yet be found,
Shedding for aye, Light, Truth, and Love, 'midst hallowed peace profound,
Reflecting those shining attributes with lustre bright around.

decorative feature

Lyon and Blair, Printers, Wellington.

* From the author's poem, "The genesis of the Warlike sprit in Man."