The Music of Dirty Work

The chorus learn eight pieces of music which have been specifically arranged for choirs. They are a mix of well-known works (Ode to Joy, The Humming Chorus), contemporary pop (Lorde’s Royals) and others such as Jai Ho. The songs create a dramatic addition to the scenes they are performed in.

Royals, Lorde, arranged by Mark Rosser

Royals is the debut single by New Zealand singer-songwriter Lorde. The track’s lyrics express disapproval with the sumptuous lifestyle presented in songs and music videos by pop and hip-hop influenced artists. It criticizes consumerism and ridicules the luxury items mentioned in popular songs.

The Humming Chorus, Giacomo Puccini

The Humming Chorus is from Madama Butterfly; an opera in three acts by Giacomo Puccini. In the opera, Butterfly’s vigil became the ‘Coro a bocca chiusa’ or ‘The Humming Chorus’. This is a moment of calm when the Butterfly peacefully (and silently) waits.

Angels From the Realms of Glory, traditional arrangement Willcocks

Angels From the Realms of Glory is a Christmas carol written by Scottish poet James Montgomery.

Dirty Work only uses the last 8 bars of the song.

Thielelo, arranged by John Rosser

Thielelo is a traditional Tamil (South Asian language. Native to India & Sri Lanka) Folk Song. It is often a song that is repeated again and again sung by boatmen while pulling or lifting together.

Mātangi, Rev. Wharetini Rangi, arranged by Robert Wīremu

Mātangi is a New Zealand Maori Folksong. It was written by Wharetini Rangi in 1927. Wharetini Rangi wrote the song to express his feelings as he sailed from Tauranga to Auckland.

Something in the Water, Brooke Fraser, arranged by Penny Dodd

Something in the Water is the lead single from New Zealander Brooke Fraser. It is a giddy, infectious love song with a rollicking country/folk setting.

Jai Ho, A.R Rahman

Jai Ho was written by A.R Rahman for the 2008 film Slumdog Millionaire. ‘Jai Ho’ is a phrase which can be roughly translated as ‘Let (the) victory prevail’. It has a mix of modern Indian with eighties soundtracks. It is sung with a combination of Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi.

Ode to Joy, Beethoven, arranged by John Rosser

Symphony No. 9 is written by Ludwig van Beethoven, composed between 1822 and 1824. The text in the original was adapted from ‘Ode to Joy’, a poem by Friedrich Schiller in 1785. For Dirty Work, writers Jacob Rajan and Justin Lewis have reframed the lyrics to further the story.

Image of the sheet music for Ode to Joy