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THRENODY

Date: 2016
Duration: 10 minutes
Instrumentation: Bb clarinet, viola, piano
Premiere: October 23, 2016. Yasmin Flores (clarinet), Stephen Fine (viola), Ann DuHamel (piano). El Paso Community College.



The complete title of this piece is Threnody (for Naboth). As a Christian, this lament is a kind of personal exercise of both sympathy and faith — an expression of sympathy for the man Naboth who was murdered by King Ahab in order to appropriate the man’s prized vineyard, and an expression of faith in a God who cares deeply about justice. But the parentheses in the title indicates my desire that this piece serves as a lament of sympathy for any who have been the victims of injustice. Sadly, we have no shortage of opportunities for lament and no shortage of modern–day Naboths, whether we think of the Tamir Rices of this world, the Orlando Pulse nightclub victims, or the Charleston church massacre victims. Listeners are invited to lament as they see fit. Threnody is essentially a funeral march during which the Lutheran funeral chorale "Ich hab’ mein’ Sach’ Gott heimgestellt" ("I have left all that concerns me up to God") appears at various moments, a chorale that makes a similar appearance in Bach’s funeral BWV 106 Actus Tragicus cantata. Threnody was written for Yasmin Flores (clarinet), Stephen Fine (viola), and Ann DuHamel (piano), and was premiered in October 2016.

Performances

—February 12, 2017: University of Iowa Center for New Music — Thiago Ancelmo de Souza (cl), Elizabeth Upson (va), Nicha Pimthong (pf), (Iowa City, IA)
—October 24, 2016: Yasmin Flores (cl), Stephen Fine (va), Ann DuHamel (pf), New Mexico State University (Las Cruces, NM)
—October 23, 2016: Yasmin Flores (cl), Stephen Fine (va), Ann DuHamel (pf), El Paso Community College (El Paso, TX)