Inner Voices

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*Listen* This three-movement [orchestral] piece is the composer’s largest and most venturesome to date. It represents three states of mind and voices inside himself that he became aware of as he worked. Romanticism is expressed here as a voice in each movement that gives it an other-worldly character. The movements are not in a specific key as much as around a tonal center, each movement creating an exotic tension by being as far from the previous one’s tonal center as it can get.


Of his own piece, the composer writes: “the large-scale tonal architecture and fast-slow-fast structure of the three separate movements create a resemblance to a short three-movement symphony. Although the three movements and their different titles imply three separate worlds, the work is really through-composed as far as a progression of emotional and psychological states is concerned. That is, the voice of the first movement, Tigers, which opens ardente e feroce, also expresses the amorous and the heroic (as well as the two descriptive terms movement marking), and builds to a violento climax. This voice also delves into the regretful and mysterious, the powerful and the passionate, ending with a surge.

The voice of the second movement, Phantom, speaks of desolation and a relentless emptiness, which builds several times--again through a feeling of expectancy or inevitability--to several climaxes of intensity, only to fall back into the desolate mood of the opening. The last movement, Nightride, reveals a new inner strength, carried along by a macabre and sinister darkness, which alternates with a giocoso section, and music that is related emotionally (the notturno sections) to the first two movements.

Inner Voices was composed especially for the Warsaw Philharmonic and this recording between December and May of 1991-1992. It is an exploration of my inner spiritual world and the diverse, often competing voices that speak to me in a creative fashion. In that sense, the aesthetic, but not the harmonic language of the piece is probably closest to that of Robert Schumann’s fantasy pieces.” (Notes by Leslie Kandell)

Reviews of Inner Voices

Fanfare Magazine, William Zagorski

“It’s an otherworldly piece that swings between dream and nightmare. Each movement presents a symphonic synthesis...The second movement, Phantoms, is desolate...The third movement, Nightride, projects a sense of triumph. All is done in tonal yet highly convoluted language.”  

© John Carbon 2015