Imagining World reconciles two seemingly contrasting ideas of celebration and remembrance by drawing inspiration from a poignant poem with the same title. Original themes are woven with motives from the commissioning school's fight song in this nostalgic yet celebratory work.
Genre: Band | # of Players: Standard
Level: 4.5 | Duration: 7:00
Bb Clarinet 1
Bb Clarinet 2
Bb Clarinet 3
Bb Bass Clarinet
Eb Alto Saxophone 1/2
Bb Tenor Saxophone
Eb Baritone Saxophone
Bb Trumpet 1
Bb Trumpet 2
Bb Trumpet 3
F Horn 1
F Horn 2
Timpani (4 drums)
Percussion 1 (bells, xylophone)
Percussion 2 (vibraphone, suspended cymbal, tambourine, field drum)
Percussion 3 (chimes, 4.3-octave marimba, woodblock)
Percussion 4 (wind chimes, bass drum, suspended cymbal, tam-tam)
Commissioned by the Oswego High School Band, Stephanie Silosky, director (Oswego, IL), Imagining World draws its inspiration from a few sources. Firstly, when Glen Schneider commissioned the piece, he said he wanted something to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the band program at OHS. Secondly, I was informed that the funding for the commission came from the parents of a former student, Elizabeth (Beth) May Sharp, that passed away. To reconcile these two seemingly contrasting ideas, I stumbled across a poem by one of my favorite artists/story-tellers, Brian Andreas, called "Imagining World."
“Imagining World” by Brian Andreas
In my dream, the angel shrugged & said,
If we fail this time, it will be a failure of imagination
& then she placed the world gently in the palm of my hand.
I love the idea of angels looking over us in our dreams and encouraging imagination as we look toward the future. In order to grow, looking to and planning for the future is a pivotal part of looking back and celebrating the past.
Much of the thematic material for the piece is derived from the final melodic phrase of the OHS school song (also the Notre Dame Victory March). The work opens with the sparkling (and dreamy) qualities of wind chimes and metallic keyboard percussion presenting this melodic material, the "Oswego" theme, which appears throughout the piece is several forms. A trumpet and horn fanfare follows leading to a full ensemble climax before moving into the main body of the piece. Directly following the climax is the first statement of the "dream" theme played by solo flute. It undergoes several transformations and intermingles with the "Oswego" theme as the piece progresses. Imagining World strikes a delicate balance between reflection and celebration – a challenge that we must all embrace.
- Nathan Daughtrey