Of Time and Disillusionment (2016) This work was written specifically with a focus on leanness and clarity of line without adumbration in orchestral texture. The reduced, quasi-classical orchestration (no percussion, save 3 tubular bells, or low brass) and frequent highlighting of solo instruments gives a lightness to the orchestral mass which is usually, and consciously, avoided elsewhere in my output.
The five movements (in seven sections) are laid out symmetrically around the middle section of movement 3, the Petite Sonnerie:
1 Fragmented escapements
2 Ritornelli (short break)
3 Notturni per i defunti (Notturno 1 – Petite Sonnerie – Notturno 2) (short break)
4 Corrupted Dances (Geistertänze)
5 Regulated escapements
The allusion to various aspect of clockwork (escapements and petite sonnerie) as well as the use of rhythmic gestures and cycles are regularly found in my other works. However, the fragility with which they are often presented here is more grotesquely contrasted with a gradual bellicosity that evolves as the work progresses.
The following quotation from Marcus Aurelius’ Mediations is quoted in the full score and resonates throughout the work: “There is a kind of river of things passing into being, and Time is a violent torrent. For no sooner is each seen, then it has been carried away, and another is being carried by, and that, too, will be carried away.”
© K.Hesketh 2016