Title: Looking for the Land that is Nowhere
Instrumentation: Theremin and Scordatura String Octet
The title for this piece was inspired by the line ‘The land that is nowhere, that is the true home’ from ‘a magic spell for the far journey’ in chapter 8 of The Secret of the Golden Flower. It conveys my sense that being a composer is about searching, in sound, for fleeting solidifications of intangible experiences. While composing, as while listening, we embark on a journey within ourselves guided by the sounds imagined or heard – in either case we don’t really know where we will end up, and this mystery holds our attention. The song of the theremin is at the heart of this piece, journeying through the wild, mercurial spectral emanations of the scordatura strings. Horatiu Radulescu’s music has often been an inspiration to me and his exploration of scordatura in his string quartets gave me the confidence to bring this idea to fruition.