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Narratives for Orchestra

Photo taken in Saitama, Japan, 2023

for full orchestra (2024)

3 3 3 3 – 4 3 3 1 – 2 – hp – str

I. Passages

II. Tides (Moments)

III. Fantasy

Narratives for Orchestra is a work that, while not based on any particular extramusical narrative, is storytelling in character. While I composed this piece with my friends and family strongly in mind, my overall hope in writing this piece was that it simply invites any audience to entertain their own sort of narrative and imagination while experiencing the music.

Various states of being are woven into the work’s three movements. A sense of curiosity underscores the opening movement, which depicts several distinctive mysterious landscapes via different musical ideas, each briefly established but not yet extensively developed; to the listener, this may feel like wandering through multiple worlds in a brief amount of time (“passages”), continuously opening doors to enter such new landscapes. Such briefly preestablished musical ideas then serve as the foundation of subsequent movements. The ideas evolve into a second movement that feels like large waves (“tides”) of emotion, overwhelming and powerful at times yet distant, almost intangible at others. At its most fragile point, such state of being then transforms into, as titled, a fantasy on one of the introductory themes – a contrapuntal play on originally ambiguous melodies that strives toward a long-yearned place of exhilaration and hope, bringing home the imaginary worlds introduced in earlier movements.

Watch the third movement here:

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