"Elvendream" - A Piano Concerto
Instrumentation: 220.127.116.11 - 18.104.22.168 - Timp+3 - Strings
Duration: 30 minutes
This concerto conveys what I imagine the dreams of Elves to be like, whether they are dreams of day or night. The Elves that I am thinking of are more idealized creatures than humans, and not charming little Christmas Elves. The first movement conveys lands whose colors are more vivid than the most brilliant of our rainbows on Earth. Featured prominently in this movement are exotic, multi-colored birds that swirl around the Elves, as the Elves move about their lands seeking inspiration for their own artistic expression. In this fantastical land, mountains dwarf the Rockies; waterfalls cascade from astounding heights; and forests with leaves of all shades of green, blue, and purple give way to meadows that are saturated with flowers that generate their own light. The Elves dream of their inspiration, and then think it into a fixed form of art.
The second movement is an Elvish dream-memory of intense passion and beauty. It is a place where dark emotions, including sorrow, yearning, loss, and nostalgia, can live, but are controlled by Elvish power and are able to be kept at a safe distance. The music is meant to be a safe experience of these emotions which leads a to a catharsis. The landscape of this place is much less obvious, but includes visions of dense forests at dusk with mysteriously luminescent plants, craggy mountains with unimaginably steep drops under stars that have the power to cast a dim glow, and views of clouds of emotion that come and go in various swirls and waves. The Elves’ dream-memories of this place are at times nightmares, but their power keeps the place ultimately at bay, though its turbulence threatens to break the Elves’ hold at times.
The final movement is a relief after the dark intensity of the second movement. The Elvendreams return to a consciousness that soars above a glorious landscape, through air of crystalline freshness. The plants’ colors are even more vivid than before, and the sunlight is even more glorious. However, the dream visit to the place of dark emotions from the second movement has stirred up those passions, and the Elvendreams of the third movement begin to lose their ability to keep those dark emotions fully away. At a number of points, particularly in the middle section, the darkness starts to spread in intensity, but then, the light effortlessly returns, again and again, more magnificently than before. The concerto closes with intense dreamscapes of beautiful energy.
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