Cosmos is a work for symphony orchestra and narrator. The Space Coast Symphony Orchestra commissioned it and gave the world premiere under conductor Aaron Collins on May 27 in Melbourne, Florida, and the following day in Vero Beach Florida.
On May 25 and 26, 2019 in the same cities, a longer, revised version of Cosmos received wonderful performances. The piece will be commercially recorded by the SCSO in the fall of this year.
Here is the programme note for the work:
Cosmos is a series of musings on origins of the universe as we know and as we imagine it. It also examines the human instinct to explore our world and beyond. The music is structured in eight movements:
The Beginning Of All Things
The March Of Humankind
The Exploration Of The Oceans
The Exploration Of The Air
The Exploration Of Space
The Beauty Of The Cosmos
The Journey Of Discovery
These are interspersed with spoken passages introducing or reacting to the music. The work does not seek to evoke the vastness of the cosmos, rather to project a human perspective on its mysteries.
Musically speaking the whole of Cosmos is built on just one 12 note theme. This may be heard heard in its simplest form in the three trombones near the very beginning of the piece. In the movements that follow it features in every bar, in a huge range of rhythms and tempos, in melody or bass, inverted, retrograde or both, though usually in a triadic tonal harmonic context.
The nascence of Cosmos lay in an idea of Aaron Collins for a work for orchestra and narrator on this subject. I am so grateful to Aaron and the Space Coast Symphony Orchestra for commissioning it.
The narrators for the first performances were Senator Bill Nelson, a former shuttle astronaut in Melbourne and Colonel Hal Gibson in Vero Beach. For both 2019 performances the narrator was ‘Voice of NASA’ Hugh Harris. All performances to date have been to huge and most enthusiastic audiences.
Please contact me for a perusal score or a recording of Cosmos.
Piccolo/(Flute), 2 Flutes, 2 Oboes (#2/Cor Anglais),
2 Bb Clarinets, Bass Clarinet, 2 Bassoons
4 Horns in F, 2 Trumpets in C, 2 Trombones, Bass Trombone, Tuba
Timpani, 4 Percussion, Celesta, Piano