Imago Mundi

for Large Orchestra

George Rochberg

Rental
Publisher: Theodore Presser Company
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

?Imago Mundi? was written in 1973, following a trip to Japan the summer of that year.

I have, regardless of the specific elements deployed, tried to stay with those things which can be sung or danced to or marched to without in any sense inhibiting my fancy about how they can be presented. If it is logical, as it appears to me, to marry contradictory elements, it is just as logical, I feel, to try to marry those elements or aspects of Western and Eastern musical cultures which resonate in my ears and spirit and find an echo in my thoughts. In the case of ?gagaku? (ancient Japanese court music), I find a remarkably basic melodic attitude which bears curious resemblances to Western musical phraseology and implied harmony; and it is these resemblances (and associations or correspondences) which I have tried to emphasize and make my own.

Since I like simple ideas to appear in complex settings and complex ideas to give the appearance of simplicity, ?Imago Mundi?, despite all its inner contradictions in terms of gesture, image sources, etc., is built on large, clear lines of structural articulation and has no ?program? as such, regardless of the larger circumference of reference and intention suggested by the title. The first and last sections are intimately related largely through their use of gagaku and other gestures. The second section subdivides into an ?alla marcia?, a ?fantasia? and ?fanfares.? In the last section all the ideas presented previously are summed up and brought together in new combinations, some of them developments of extensions of things stated more directly and simply earlier.

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Additional Information

Commission Commissioned by the Baltimore Symphony
Composition Date 1973
Duration 00:20:00
Orchestration 3 3 3 3 - 4 3 3 1; Timp. Perc. Cel. Hp. Str.
Premiere Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Sergiu Commissiona, conductor, May 8, 1974

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