Majestic Whispers (2005)

Sheet Music

Instrumentation:  Piccolo, 2 Flutes, 2 Oboes, English Horn, 2 Clarinets in Bb, Bass Clarinet in Bb, 2 Bassoons, Contrabassoon, 4 French Horns, 3 Trumpets in C, 3 Trombones, Tuba, Timpani, Bass Drum, Wood Blocks, Medium Tam-Tam, Large Tam-Tam, Triangle, Cymbals, Slapstick, Tubular Bells, Suspended Cymbal with Bow, Harp, Strings

Duration:  ca. 10:30 min.

Premiere:  6/30/2006, Talcott Mountain, CT; Hartford Symphony Orchestra, Edward Cumming, conductor

Program Notes: 

Between September 24th, 2003 and January 16th, 2004, astronomers directed the Hubble Space Telescope towards the most boring, empty, and void patch of sky they could find, and what came back through the lens was astonishing.  Around 10,000 galaxies of diverse colors, sizes, and shapes containing billions of stars located at a distance of 13 billion light years from the Earth were revealed in a space of our evening sky approximately equal to a grain of sand held at arm's length.*  

One can't help but ask, why?  Why is all that up there, out there?  Why so many galaxies, stars, nebulae, and supernovae?  How could Earth be so minutely small, and the universe so immensely big?  Seems like a bunch of wasted matter and space…

The Psalmist offered an answer:

"The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;
Night after night they display knowledge."**

Whispers.  Even in all their grandness, glory, and majesty, just whispers.  Of an unparalleled grandness, unfading glory, and unrivaled majesty.


*Hubble's Deepest View Ever Unveils Earliest Galaxies ( , March 9th, 2004).

**Psalm 19:1-2, Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.


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