The Waking Sun in a Spring season preview

In the Sunday 30 Jan 2011 Philadelphia Inquirer, David Patrick Stearns and Peter Dobrin highlight Philadelphia-area performances coming up in the next half-year. Mentioned is the Seneca Sounds project in The Crossing’s Month of Moderns, in particular the 18 June concert with my new piece for them and Tempesta di Mare, The Waking Sun.

My work, and the other commissioned music from Ēriks Ešenvalds, Kamran Ince, and Gabriel Jackson, will set texts by Seneca the Younger (3 B.C. – 65 A.D.). Seneca is just a part of it; knowing the work of The Crossing, and Donald Nally’s ear for finding new pieces, I know it will be an amazing three concerts.

The Waking Sun is scored for choir, positiv organ, theorbo, and Baroque string quintet. I’m composing it now, so all the text isn’t set in concrete, but I can let you in on the beginning. The six sections of the half-hour work are all from choruses from Seneca’s dramas. The first is from his Oedipus:

The gates have sounded, and he himself, with none to guide and sightless, gropes his way.

I then impose a line from Troades:

In whose kingdom shall you die?

And so it goes from there. I can’t wait to hear The Crossing and Tempesta in this. Can’t wait to finish writing it!

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