home news  music Performances Writings about contact

Five Phases of the Naiad’s Lament (1993)
violin and celesta
Duration: ca. 7’

SMMP No. 104

Listen to an audio clip

Winner, NACUSA Young Composers' Competition, 1994
Premiere performance: Williams Hall, New England Conservatory of Music, March 2, 1993. Hector Scott, violin and Paul Swenson, celesta.

Five Phases of the Naiad’s
Lament is a single movement work consisting of five geometrically proportioned sections. While the title suggests a programmatic element the music does not correspond to any text. Rather, this is an abstract character piece that attempts to portray a myriad of emotional states within a modest time frame. The non-narrative style of the piece does have literary models, however. In particular I was fascinated by the Italo Calvino’s If on a winter’s night, a traveller..., where the quicksilver shifts of story undermine the identity of the narrative altogether, leaving the reader to cope with the process itself.