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among dawn flowers (2001)

for soprano and piano
Text by Basho

Premiered by Barbara Ann Martin in Fredericia, Denmark, 13 January 2001 Duration: 4 minutes

CD Available
De Toda La Eternidad

This work is available on DE TODA LA ETERNIDAD.

  
 
Text

Texts by Basho

I.

Orchid — breathing
incense into
butterfly's wings.

Spring night,
cherry —
blossom dawn.

II.

Lightning —
heron-cry
stabs darkness.

How I long to see
among dawn flowers,
the face of God.

Program Note

Movement I

Piano part is like a butterfly or a blossom at dawn by the insistence of thirds, flowing, and hanging in the air.

Vocal part is like breathing incense on a spring night. (Beautiful image for a vocalist)   There is a timeless quality.  All the earth has stopped for a moment.  The sounds are inner, interior, and spiritual.  The last note in the piano is almost like a question mark at the end.

Movement II

The work starts with a lightning bolt.  All energy surges out.  The piano plays relentless, piercing, grasping for God gestures.  There is no turning back.  Then we land in a moment of prayer when the soprano sings, with love and focus "How I long to see among dawn flowers, the face of God."

"My favorite moment in any piece of music is the moment of maximum risk and striving.  Whether the venture is tiny or large, loud or soft, fragile or strong, passionate, erratic, ordinary or eccentricŠ! Maybe another way to say this is the moment of exquisite humanity and raw soul.  All art that I cherish has an element of love and recklessness and desperation.  I like music that is alive and jumps off the page and out of the instrument as if something big is at stake."

"I do believe that all music of substance should have an immediacy about it..."

"I write music that craves a listener."

"We are attracted to enigmatic things such as nature, gravity, the cosmos, space travel, God and religions, advanced math, myths, love etc. I believe we find such mysteries in art."

— Augusta Read Thomas

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Augusta Read Thomas's works, please contact G. Schirmer Inc..