HYPERION CANTO 

 

YEAR

2015

 

INSTRUMENTATION

Soprano & Viola

 

DURATION

5 minutes

 

FIRST PERFORMANCE

July 25, 2015

Sacha Peiser, soprano

Abigail Elder, viola

Bowdoin Music Festival

 

PROGRAM NOTE

Hyperion Canto is inspired by a series of books by Dan Simmons. These books are very much in the style of the epic poems of Homer. Simmons’ series is in someway, a retelling of the Iliad but in a different place and time, on a different planet.

 

For the work, I wanted to create a piece that celebrated the great epics of Homer and illustrated the battles and pageantry of heroes and Gods. For text, the original Greek of Homer’s Odyssey served as a basis for a new language. To create an alternate or parallel universe as Simmons creates in his series of books, the words and syllables are changed, mostly to accommodate a more percussive sound. The language may sound familiar but it is impossible to understand. This is to create an allusion to a mythical language that could have some aural connection to illustrate brutal battles and mythic allegory of Homer’s epic poems.

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