||Two movements, each divided into three sections, each section inscribed with a text by Aeschylus or Homer.
- Movement I
- 1. ...the multitudinous laughter of the sea-waves...
- 2. Then my deceased mother’s Soule appear’d…Her sight much mov’d me, and to teares did drive my note of her decease.
- 3. The Sirens...sit amidst...a hedge...Of dead men’s bones
- Movement II
- 1. Aeolus, Great Guardian of the hollow winds
- 2. ...The Sunne went down and up rose Night
- 3. Then twanged he up the string, that as a swallow in the aire doth sing...Jove rent the aire with thunder
|Year/Date of Composition
- New York: Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center.
American Composers Orchestra, Gunther Schuller, conductor, Vivian Fine, piano
||2* 2* 2* 2*, 4221, bass trombone, Percussion (3), Solo Piano, Strings, Harp. Additional Percussion: xylophone, vibraphone, glockenspiel, temple blocks (high and low), wood blocks (high and low), hatchet, susp. cymbal, triangle
||Vivian Fine website
Fine returned to a favorite theme, Greek mythology, using short passages by Aeschylus and Homer containing imagery of sea waves, the appearance of a deceased mother, Sirens amidst a hedge of dead men’s bones, Aeolus and hollow winds, Night, and Jove’s harp. The text’s imagery becomes the character for that section, suggesting linear shapes and orchestration…The piano is not a solo instrument as in a concerto, but a member of the orchestra whose timbre Fine mixes with other instruments and occasionally features in a solo passage....Fine experimented with unusual orchestral doublings and swathes of orchestral colors. There are passages in which the glockenspiel doubles a trumpet and an English horn doubles a flute: the bassoon repeats a previous piano passage; and the sections about the sirens beings with a cello solo repeated by the contra bassoon. Bassoon, xylophone, and piano are mixed during the section about Aeolus. It is almost as if Fine considers the instrumental timbres to be dancers whom she features in solos and small ensembles.
–Heidi Von Gunden, The Music of Vivian Fine, Scarecrow Press, 1999.