compositions | band | water spirits (2019)

Water Spirits (2019)

Medium: 7 Solo Percussion w/ Band
Publisher: C. Alan Publications
Composed: 2019
Duration: 6:15
Difficulty: Grade 3 ensemble / Grade 4 solo parts

Flute 1
Flute 2
B-flat Clarinet 1
B-flat Clarinet 2
B-flat Clarinet 3
B-flat Bass Clarinet
Alto Saxophone 1
Alto Saxophone 2
Tenor Saxophone
Baritone Saxophone

B-flat Trumpet 1
B-flat Trumpet 2
Horn 1
Horn 2
Trombone 1
Trombone 2
Euphonium (Baritone T.C.) 

Solo Percussion 1 (Bells, Xylophone, Ocean Drum, Low Drum)
Solo Percussion 2 (Vibraphone, Shared 4-octave Marimba, Low Drum)
Solo Percussion 3 (Chimes, Shared 4-octave Marimba, Low Drum)
Solo Percussion 4 (4 Timpani, Suspended Cymbal)
Solo Percussion 5 (Snare Drum, Bongos, Small Ribbon Crasher, Woodblock, Suspended Cymbal)
Solo Percussion 6 (4 Concert Toms, Large Ribbon Crasher, Hi-Hat, China Cymbal)
Solo Percussion 7 (Concert Bass Drum, Tam-Tam, Wind Chimes

WATER SPIRITS was initially inspired by tales of a mer-man sighting in Lake Minnewanka, which is located in the eastern area of Banff National Park in Calgary, Alberta. Minnewanka translates to “Water of the Spirits” in Nakoda. This inspiration lead me down the mer-man research rabbit hole and landed on the myth of Glaucus and Scylla in Ovid’s ‘Metamorphoses.’ In essence, the myth is a love triangle between Glaucus (a fisherman turned mer-man), Scylla (a nymph turned sea monster), and Circe (a witch). In short, Glaucus loves Scylla. Scylla does not love Glaucus, as she finds his half-fish form repulsive. Glaucus goes to Circe to ask her to cast a love spell on Scylla so that she will fall in love with him. Instead, Circe falls in love with Glaucus. When he does not return her affections, Circe takes it out on Scylla by poisoning the water in which she was bathing. This turns Scyall into a hideous sea monster with the head of six serpents and a waist of six vicious dogs. The piece follows the outline of the myth, which is filled with darkness, longing, love, denial, and betrayal.

Commissioned by l'École Madeleine d'Houet, Sean Craig, director, in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.