|Laura McPheeters & Jocelyn Morlock - August 2001
Today, March 28, social media is replete with the news of the sudden death of the Manitoba born, but Vancouver based, composer Jocelyn Morlock.
I can state here that we were friends and that I photographed her many times and always enjoyed her positive view of life that she displayed with a wonderful sense of humour.
Vancouver is a city with a poor memory for its past. At my age my memory is not bad. I distinctly recall that at least 15 years ago the then Musical Director of the Pacific Baroque Orchestra, Marc Destrubé commissioned Morlock for a composition that was played at the church on 33d near Granville.
The composition was most unusual as it featured red haired soprano Phoebe MacRae singing while also playing a glass harmonica. I am standing by in the hopes that the world trotting Destrubé might call me or email me with the exact details.
And Marc Destrubé wrote: Her piece ‘Golden’ was commissioned by the Pacific Baroque Orchestra in 2001, and we premiered it as a companion piece to Boccherini’s Stabat Mater, with Phoebe MacRae as soprano soloist. We later recorded it in a version with oboe instead of soprano and it appears on ‘Cobalt’, an album of her music. It conjured “a Manitoba swimming hole so rich in iron pyrite that bathers emerged dusted with gold”, hence the use of glass harmonica (in fact two wine glasses tuned with varying amounts of water) in the closing bars.
My favourite photograph of Morlock is one where I photographed her for the Georgia Straight with cellist Laura McPheeters.
She also posed wearing my mother’s red Mexican shawl for a
series that featured my friends and relatives wearing the shawl and were
obliged to write about the experience.
She did very nicely. The link is below.
Jocelyn Morlock - Composer in my mother's red shawl
And lastly I want to record here that Morlock was adventurous. She came over to my house and posed by my antique Chickering baby grand. We also did a double selfie in my Kits guest bathroom.
Instead of citing that usual requiescat in pace I would rather say of her death, sursum corda. Let’s lift up our hearts all who met her and were lucky to hear her music.