1. Chamber Orchestra
2. Symphony Orchestra
Commissioned Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Griffith University, as part of the 2013 Silver Harris and Jeff Peck Composition Prize.
Score and parts
understood by few; mysterious or secret
Composing Arcane I was transported to a world in my imagination; deep below the surface of the earth, standing in the middle of a vacuous cave with no signs of exit. It was pitch black and deafeningly silent, yet the silence was filled by the pure sine tones of my own tinnitus and the gentle hum of my body functioning. I metaphorically felt the weight of layers of earth above, but physically felt the air pressure, the drop in temperature. The weight of my own panic and fear at being in complete isolation bore down on my chest, pushing and willing itself to break free and to overwhelm. I explored the feeling of being completely alone and the not-quite- silence engulfing me, feeling the cold and hearing the tiny drops of water formed by condensation. Yet in my imagined isolation, I wondered at how one could block out the panic to notice the beauty of the earth. I imagined the way certain rocks and minerals reflected light off one another. The glimmers and flashes were delicate, beautiful and mysterious. Real tiny pockets of beauty and light hidden in the cold walls of a dark, isolating space and then, suddenly in my mind, these pockets began to morph into sound. Born out of an overactive imagination Arcane explores the mysteries, secrets and wonders that are experienced by few beneath the earth. How I could feel the experience so vividly without actually being there was both frightening and mysterious – a testament to the secrets of the mind.