about labyrinthmusic and John Burke

John Burke passed away on January 18, 2020.


My work for saxophone quartet, Gyaling, is included in a new release by Vancouver's Saxophilia. It revisits the harmonic source code that informs the entire labyrinth repertoire. Its exuberant mood could be compared to a fanfare, appropriate for announcing the beginning of a labyrinth event. The gyaling is a type of double-reed bugle, of military origin, found in the ensembles of Tibetan monasteries. Played in pairs, its musical persona is raucous and celebratory - a true spiritual wake up call.

It is available on Bandcamp.


Ô bel enfant world premiere
My new work for two pianos, Ô bel enfant, will be given its premiere performance by Vancouver's Yarilo Contemporary Music Ensemble on November 20, 2015. The venue will be the Orpheum Annex Theatre and will feature pianists Jane Hayes and Anna Levy. The piece is a memorial to Claude Vivier and is based on a quotation from his work for voice and orchestra, Lonely Child. The piece is a spin off from my labyrinth project, and was influenced by the kebyar style of Balinese music that made such a profound impact on Vivier's style. I had the great good fortune to study this marvellous repertoire in depth in Ubud, Bali in 2012, and I continue to be inspired by its energy and brilliance.


Ensemble Vivant performs the
World Premiere of
John Burke’s