Night for Chamber Orchestra | Peter Askim

Night for Chamber Orchestra

Audio Recording

Instrumentation: Chamber Orchestra ( perc./strings)

Duration: 7’45”

Program Notes:

We often think of the night as being black – the absence of color. When we look closer – when our eyes adjust – “night” encompasses many colors: the burnished gold of sunset, the deep blue of the early evening sky, the gray beginnings of dawn. Many subtle gradations of color reflect the many complex, sometimes contradictory characters that night inhabits – and our experience of them. Each color, each sensation, is unique, personal, and each exists immediately adjacent to the others. Within the space we think of as “black”, there is a wide spectrum of feeling and emotion.

The night holds within it so many shades of human experience – in the deepest hours of the night we are our most human, distilled to our essence. There is no time more awe-inspiring than the subtle change from sunset to dusk, no time more peaceful than when we drift gently in dreams. No time more lonely than when we lie awake in the middle of the night – outer stillness, agitation within.

Night is a meditation on the subtleties, contradictions and ambiguities of night – the different colors, emotions and experiences that exist, one next to the other. Sometimes comforting, sometimes beautiful, sometimes lonely. Musical gestures that reach upwards and outwards are answered by music that falls back on itself – downward, inward, towards darkness. Stillness and motion coexist. Solid blocks of sound are answered by delicate threads that disappear into the darkness. Black, grey, gold, blue: all coexist in the space we think of as black. As our eyes (and ears) adjust, we experience each one, palpable, distinct and yet an inseparable part of the whole.

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