In the Open Air, in the Silent Lines
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
- Bass Drum
- Tam-Tam (large and medium)
None discovered thus far.
In the Open Air, In the Silent Lines was inspired by a portion of the preface to Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.
This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown, or to any man or number of men -- go freely with powerful uneducated persons, and with the young, and with the mothers of families -- re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, and dismiss whatever insults your own soul; and your very flesh shall be a great poem, and have the richest fluency, not only in its words, but in the silent lines of its lips and face, and between the lashes of your eyes, and in every motion and joint of your body.
I am moved by the directness of Whitman’s words: an elegant, idealistic call to action. Given our country’s political climate, the text feels particularly fitting. I was first drawn to the phrase, “and your very flesh shall be a great poem, and have the richest fluency, not only in its words, but in the silent lines of its lips and face, and between the lashes of your eyes, and in every motion and joint of your body.” For me, this illustrates the great beauty and potential found in all of us. My hope is that we listen, reflect and find new and creative ways to make meaningful and positive change.
Musically, this phrase evokes an analogous idea of fragile melodic fragments emerging from the opening overlapping and intersecting lines. As the fragments took shape, they were then juxtaposed with the textural lines, informing the structure of the work. Further, “open air,” (a phrase found earlier in Whitman’s preface but not in the included excerpt) alludes to the space found throughout the work.
- Program Note by composer
Commissioned by the Phi Beta Mu Band Fraternity for the 2018 North Dakota All-State Band, Emily Threinen, conductor.
- Program Note from score
Leaves of Grass is a poetry collection by American poet Walt Whitman. First published in 1855, Whitman spent most of his professional life writing and rewriting Leaves of Grass, revising it multiple times until his death. There have been held to be either six or nine individual editions of Leaves of Grass, the count varying depending on how they are distinguished. This resulted in vastly different editions over four decades -- the first edition being a small book of twelve poems, and the last, a compilation of over 400.
- Program Notes from Wikipedia
None discovered thus far.
To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project
- University of Nebraska (Lincoln) Wind Ensemble (Carolyn Barber, conductor) - 1 December 2021
- University of Utah (Salt Lake City) Wind Ensemble (Timothy Sexton, conductor) - 9 November 2021
- Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.) Symphonic Band (Shawn D. Vondran, conductor) – 22 February 2020 (CBDNA 2020 North Central Division Conference, Chicago, Ill.)
- University of Nebraska Kearney Wind Ensemble (Duane Bierman, conductor) – 5 February 2020
- Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.) Symphonic Band (Shawn D. Vondran, conductor) – 6 December 2019
- University of Nebraska Kearney Wind Ensemble (Duane Bierman, conductor) – 5 December 2019
- Kent (Ohio) State University Wind Ensemble (Jesse Leyva, conductor) – 27 September 2019
- University of Kansas (Lawrence) Wind Ensemble (Paul Popiel, conductor) – 8 October 2018
Works for Winds by This Composer
All Wind Works
- All the Things I'm Not (2019)
- Among the Aspens (2022)
- And Sings the Tune Without the Words (2020)
- April (2008)
- Beneath a Canvas of Green (2012/2018)
- Bluebonnet Drift (2021)
- Child Moon (2017)
- Concerto for Percussion and Wind Ensemble (2018)
- A Dream of Trees (2019)
- Drifting (2022)
- Fever Flash
- Floral Larceny (2018)
- Forever Radiant (2019)
- A Glimpse of the Eternal (2016)
- I was Just Looking at the World (2011)
- In the Open Air, in the Silent Lines (2018)
- In This Moment (2001/2011)
- Inner Sanctum (2010)
- Iris (2016)
- It Has to Be Beautiful (2018)
- Life Painting (2019)
- Life Painting (Adaptable Band) (2019/2020)
- The Long Light After Time (2022)
- Only Light (2014)
- Pale Blue on Deep (2011)
- Stained with Light
- Tears of St Lawrence (2014)
- Tears of St. Lawrence (Flex instrumentation) (2014/2020)
- Temperance (2016)
- ...to the wind (2014)
- Traces of Amber Sky (2018)
- Vignettes of Mount Vernon (2022)