Remembrance (2006) - Belinda Reynolds
for chamber chorus, piano and marimba
Commissioned by Santa Clara University and BARBWIRE;
Premiered November 2006 - Santa Clara, CA
REMEMBRANCE is a one-movement work that was commissioned by BARBWIRE for premiere in their annual El Dia Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) festival in 2006. With REMEMBRANCE, I intended to compose a piece that expresses the joy and celebration that is the focus of this Mexican holiday. For Mexicans, this is a time in which the community comes together to celebrate the circle of life by remembering both deceased loved ones and children. Unlike many societies, death is approached with humor and grace, with festivities focusing on galas filled with sumptuous foods, lavish alters and gifts to the children.
REMEMBRANCE approaches these elements of the holiday through both the musical structure and the text, written by Santa Fe based author, Elizabeth Orem, The simple, concise libretto follows a tale of celebrating the dead, celebrating the children, and acknowledging how both will one day be together again in a joyous continuation of the circle of life. Musically, the overall structure consists of five sequential sections that move seamlessly into one another. The first, middle and last sections are primarily for chorus, with the marimba and piano acting in an accompanimental role. The second and the fourth sections are short instrumental interludes that act as transitional material to set up the differing character of following choral sections, respectively. Special thanks goes to Stephen Barber and Matt Orem of Barbwire for their commitment and help in the creation of this work. I also wish to thank Michelle Schumann and Tom Burritt, for who’s outstanding musicianship inspired the instrumentation for this choral piece. Finally, I also wish to dedicate this piece to the memory of Barbara Shearer, a talented pianist and teacher much beloved by many in the music community. She has been an inspiration for countless aspiring musicians, and her life will be celebrated and cherished for generations to come.
Approx. Duration: 10'