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Angel Lam (China) - �ԤФhrough the Interwoven Growth�� for Woodwind Quintet �ԤˤԤҤ��


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I.      Forest of the bare branches

II.     First Snow Upon the Evergreen Grove

III.    Valley Stream's Fragrance of the Green Green Woodlands

 

Program Notes:

One November afternoon I took a walk through the woods.  Half bared branches interwove with each other as if they were holding hands.  They locked sunshine onto the ground, reflecting rays of silvery sprays.  When the wind blew, the movement of the tree branches and fallen leaves changed the direction of the shine, and I saw myself dancing in the mystery of a silvery river... The scenery was so stunning that I could hear it sing.  The wind mingled with the leaves and the leaves with its branches; I paused in amazement to listen.  Out of silence, music was born.  

 

I chose the bassoon to begin the opening of the first movement, �ԤǤorest of the Bare Branches��.  To me, the bassoon has an enchanting voice that seems to carry the spirit of the tree from which it is made.  It begins the call of the interwoven branches in the opening of this composition; they grow out of each other like lyrical branches...

 

I have always been attracted to the distinct timbre of the woodwind instruments, and am especially fond of writing for this combination.  The generic name for their family of instruments also inspired this piece, the 'wood' 'wind' quintet.  They each take on a special character in my music, weaving out a dialogue of interwoven melodies.  I saw nature through the eyes of the painter; all of nature is an interwoven tapestry of lines, dots, and colors, spun out into a mysterious lyricism.  

 

Seasonal changes have always amazed me and reminded me of how majestic nature's creation is�Ԥɤhe first day of snow fall, first roar of the spring thunder, first warm breeze from the tropics in mid-May... it is such an alluring  experience that sometimes I think it is beyond us to completely replicate. This composition is my sincere attempt to translate these impressions into music.

 

The second movement, �ԤǤirst Snow Upon the Evergreen Grove��, describes the first snow of winter that changed the color of the natural landscape.  Neon white flakes danced in the sky, and hang on to the deep black of the evergreen forest.  The opening, animated motive danced and interwove to the beats of a sky of flying snow flakes.  The world waited in harmony for the season to come...

 

The last movement, �ԤȤalley Stream's Fragrance of the Green Green Woodlands�� , describes the wake of spring to the beginning of summer. The woodwind melody is the choir of all living creatures at the dawn of spring; valley stream bubbling with fragrance in the gentle undulating passage of the clarinet and bassoon.  I could smell the mist of an approaching summer rain... In this set of three movements I translated the scenery into musical notes.  The melody of the five different shades and characters of the woodwind instruments interweave with each other simulating the great art works of nature.

 

The reflection of nature in art is my greatest passion.

 

�  Miss Lam began composing at the age of nine. Since her undergraduate studies she has been an active participant of major music festivals. She participated and had performances in the Asian Composer's League Music Festival in Japan and Taiwan, Sommerakademie Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, "Music 2000" and "Music 99" in United States, IRCAM in Paris, France, Aspen Music Festival 2002 and 2003, and "Songfest 2004". At these festivals she has the opportunity to study privately with renowned composers worldwide.
Lam is currently pursuing a doctorate degree and is the graduate assistant of composition department at the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University; her teacher is Christopher Theofanidis. She is a double degree major in music composition and music theory. Ms. Lam received her undergraduate degree from the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, studying under the guidance of Law Wing Fai.
honors include: First prize in Prix d' Ete 2003 composition competition, Aspen Music Festival Fellowship Award, National Association of Composers of U.S.A (NACUSA) 26th Annual Young Composer's Competition 2nd prize, ASCAP/SCI Young Composer Commissioning Award 2004 regional winner, two ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award honorable mention. Other honors: First prize in Millennium Music Competition for Woodwind Quintet Composition, with premiere performance in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Randolph S. Rothschild Award for excellence in composition, Hong Kong Jockey Club Music and Dance Fund Full Scolarship (2001-03), CASH Composition Scholarship Award (2000) and Overseas Studies Full Scholarship 2003-2004, Peabody Merit Scholarship, Peabody Career Development Grant, and a Senatorial Scholarship from the state of Maryland. Recent performances: premiere of "Red Peony Sky in Mid-June" by Aspen Music Festival's Proteus Contemporary Ensemble. This composition is recently choreographed for ballet by the artistic director of the Peabody Dance Preparatory School, who gave its ballet premiere at the "Peabody Spring Dance Showcase 2004". Premiere performance of "Therefore We Do Not Lose Heart" for women's choir at the festival opening concert of "Songfest 2004", at Pepperdine University, Malibu, California. Her text "Of Things not Seen" was used as the theme and title of the festival concert. Please visit her website at: www.angellam.com

 

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