David LangUSAMusic2003

While I was at Civitella I worked on a piece called LOUD LOVE SONGS, a concerto for the percussionist Evelyn Glennie and the EOS Orchestra, which premiered in New York in 2004. One of the great things I got to do at Civitella that I don't get to do enough of at home was sit in my studio and think - there is always too much to do in New York to throw yourself into a period of creative inactivity. All that thinking made it possible for me to imagine a new kind of role for a soloist in a concerto. Usually a soloist plays the hero, the bold leader who challenges the ensemble to follow or to change. In Italy I came up with the idea that maybe a soloist could physically represent the emotions of the orchestra - the soloist could stand on a platform above the orchestra, in a spotlight, making movements that embodied the expressive life of the ensemble. These movements are attached to instruments and so they create sounds, but the generating impulse was always to control the movement. It seemed more like a choreographic problem than a musical one - I amused my children no end at Civitella because much of my work was looking at myself moving in front of the mirror, trying to figure out what gestures a soloist could make that would reveal the emotional core of a piece of music.