Programme Notes

White Moon is a musical composition inspired by the poetry of Sylvia Plath, specifically the poetry from her collection Ariel, a title derived from a poem of the same title. The moon is a recurring motif in Plath's poetry. Departing from the traditional depictions of beauty and elegance, the image of the moon for Plath is a symbol of alienation and barrenness, bringing forth other themes of death and despair. Though entitled White Moon, this piece serves to evoke more of Plath's general themes rather than to simply present a musical painting. There is an overarching allusion to the night, but each of the three movements presents starkly contrasting images of the night, and this contrast is also reflected through the differences in musical language. Nevertheless, all three movements are strongly unified by common motivic material, though fleshed out in different ways.

Performance History

Premiered on 3 February 2014 by Martha Chan, Kamalia Freyling, Winnie Law, Stephanie Chen and Anh Dang Minh Vu in Kilbourn Hall, Eastman School of Music, Rochester, New York, USA. 

Performed by the same musicians on the opening concert of the 10th Anniversary Women in Music Festival on 24 March 2014 in the Lowry Hall, Eastman School of Music.


 

White Moon (2014)

for flute, clarinet in Bb, violin, cello, and piano 

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