Today I present my original composition, MAN OF THE MOUNTAINS. I completed this cantata in 2000 and scored it for tenor (John Muir), violin, piano, and choir. Below is a screenshot of the title page from the autograph score:
In the midst of bleak midwinter, I present one of my sunnier works.
MAN OF THE MOUNTAINS is one of a few secular cantatas I wrote with my father who provided the words. I scored it for very modest forces, envisioning it as a small community theatre production.
For as long as I can remember, John Muir has been a hero to me. In fact, I often feel that the great Scotsman actually saved my life long before I was even born! As a solitary, sensitive, and rather idiosyncratic lover of the natural world, I quickly found solace in learning of Muir’s similar character.
This piece is also important to me on a sentimental level since it was the last thing I wrote before leaving my childhood home in Marin County, California. In my mind, I can still taste the sweet air, smell the bay leaves, feel the carpets of thick green moss and flesh like skin of the madrone tree, hear the music of nature's eternal choir, and see the countless scenes of glory that surrounded me as I walked the trails to and through my favorite haunts onward to the high cliff rock where I used to compose music, read poetry, and dream. That realm was so extensive that one might easily think himself to be the only person on earth. Oh, for one moment more of that ephemeral bliss!
Listen at SoundClick (part 1), (part 2)
Listen at MP3Unsigned
MAN OF THE MOUNTAINS, Copyright©2000 DamonMusic by Sean Damon Rohde. All rights reserved