May 8, 2011
Good friend Jonathan Newman has a new piece, “Vivid Geography,” and it’s beautiful. It was commissioned by the same Japanese consortium that commissioned Kingfishers Catch Fire. Newman’s piece is for women’s chorus and chamber orchestra, and man, it makes me wish I had the opportunity to write something for this same scoring. (Well, maybe minus the chorus. I love chorus, don’t get me wrong, but I think any time you add a chorus to a large ensemble piece, you reduce the number of potential performances by, like, 375%.)
A chamber orchestra with a full sax section is capable of some incredible colors – at least in Newman’s hands. My favorite thing about the piece is the harmonic and rhythmic language, which I can only describe as being the kind of sound that I’d like to hug. You can see the score and hear the recording here.