Date of Award
Master of Music
Holy Land is an approximately 13 minute long three movement work for
orchestra and choir. It is essentially a large scale ternary form, with each
movement comprising one part of the form. The work is inspired by the
composer’s experience of growing up in Southern Illinois and by the presence
and influence of religion in the region, to which the title is a sarcastic reference.
The first movement of the work, Golden Age, represents the simplicity and
innocence of childhood, and is characterized by long sustained harmonies and a
primarily homophonic texture. The second movement, Seeker of Truth, contains
a setting of the E.E. Cummings poem of the same name, and represents an
emotionally turbulent adolescence, characterized by fast, perpetual rhythms and
a primarily contrapuntal texture. The third movement, A Better Resurrection,
contains a setting of an excerpt of the Christina Rossetti poem of the same
name, and represents a nihilism-tinged adulthood, with a return to musical
material similar to that of the first movement.
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