Earth: Poem of Thanks to Our Common Home- for upper-level youth orchestra, and university, community and professional orchestras, in celebration of Earth Day, every day.
James Grant writes:
In 2015, Australian conductor Stephen Williams, Music Director of the New South Wales public Schools Symphony Orchestra, honored me with a commission to compose a work for this magnificent ensemble of young musicians. In our discussion, Maestro Williams and I agreed that the language of this new orchestral composition would be colorful and full-bodied, with content that evoked a compelling sense of beauty, optimism, and strength- perhaps even a sense of mission.
The resulting programmatic narrative for orchestra, Earth: Poem of Thanks to Our Common Home, is an instrumental anthem of gratitude, a meditation on the noble grandeur of our planet and the abundance it provides. Earth also contemplates the significant and growing challenges faced by our planet that require our committed, resolute action. The inclusion of the words "common home" in the subtitle is a respectful nod to pope Francis, whose passionate May 2015 encyclical on the environment has as its subtitle, "On Care For our Common Home."
The intent of Earth is to inspire in all of us a deeper sense of personal connection with "our common home," through music that is both a call to celebration and a plea for more conscious living. We have countless reasons to be joyful and grateful for the gifts Mother Earth continues to provide. Yet we also must thoughtfully embrace our role as conscious stewards of our planet to ensure that she always will be at her full potential to create and sustain the miracle of life, as science indicates she has done for over three billion years. Earth: Poem of Thanks to Our Common Home suggests that with humility and gratitude, with hope and firm resolve, and with mindful attention to the wonder that is Earth's ecosystem, we can and should shift our perspective from that of living on the earth on to one of living with the earth- a shift worthy of consideration not only for ourselves and for Earth, but for the wellbeing of all future generations of inhabitants of our miraculous planet.
Solo parts included on CD ready to print: piccolo, flutes 1+2, oboes 1+2, clarinets in B-flat 1+2, bassoons 1+2, horns in F 1-4, trumpets in C 1-3 (B-flat parts included), trombones 1+2, bass trombone, tuba, timpani, percussion 1+2, optional harp (alternate piano part included), violin I, violin II, viola, cello, bass.