Symphony No. 6 - Living Earth

David Maslanka

Publisher: Carl Fischer Music
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

From my childhood on, I have felt an extremely strong connection to place. It took a lot of years for me to understand this connection and to have the energy from it come forward in my music. I now believe that the earth is a living thing, and that humans are one part of its consciousness. I have been aware of a powerful ?voice of the earth? for many years, and especially in my adopted western Montana. The voice speaks of both a powerful life force and impending disaster. I had a small epiphany a couple of years ago; something spoke in my mind that the earth would not be destroyed by human hands. Even if I made this up it is still a good idea! One of my life axioms is that there is no progress without crisis, and there is crisis to go through before we come to a right relationship with the planet. The new symphony is the expression of hope for that right relationship.

I don?t plan out music intellectually I have to know a lot in order to write a symphony, but that knowledge is for the sake of allowing something to speak which is beyond my intellect. In the same way that I have been drawn to place, I have also been drawn to the chorales of J.S. Bach ? a purely intuitive coming together. The Bach chorales are much like the arrangement of sacred melodies found in hymnals, except that Bach wrote better alto, tenor and bass parts! The melodies themselves are much older than Bach, having sources that go back literally thousands of years. Like all folk melodies they are the products of generations of singers working with the same melody ideas, and finally arriving at simple tunes that embody a huge life force. These are now melodies of the earth. For a number of years now I have brought them into my music where they have acted as a springboard for my imagination, and an open path for a bigger voice that wants to speak through me. I often feel that the chorale melodies select themselves to be in a particular piece, and in retrospect I can see that they will add to the music a subtext of meaning all their own.

Available on Rental

Additional Information

Composition Date 2004
Duration 00:35:00
Orchestration 3(dbl. Picc.) 3 4(B.Cl.) 3(dbl.Cbsn.) - 4 3 3 1; Timp. 3Perc. Pno./Cel. Hp. Str.


I. Living Earth 1 (How empty, how fleeting?Only trust in God to guide you)
II. Rain (From heaven above I come?)
III. November ? Geese on the Wing (O how blessed)
IV. Dreamer (Jesus Christ, our Savior)
V. Living Earth 2 (My soul exalts the Lord

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