1 August 2012
Jones is commissioned by the Juilliard String Quartet to write a 20-30 minute piece for their 2013-14 season
“I am thrilled and honored to compose a piece for the Juilliard String Quartet. The depth of their knowledge and devotion to music, old and new, as well as the intent, urgency, and authority with which they play it, has inspired me since my youth. Much of what I love in music I first discovered in JSQ recordings, and so I take this commission very seriously.
I am especially excited to work again with Joseph Lin, who, through repeat performances of my violin concerto (For a Faded Mind), has championed my music for several years now. Joseph has inspired me again and again with his masterful playing (especially of Bach), and the care and thought he gives to each note has caused me to rethink my approach to composition. I am certain my friendship with Joseph will play an important role in the piece I write for the JSQ.
The piece will have five movements, each referencing a certain poetic text, and will explore the spiritual and literal dimensions of religious mysticism and symbolism, as embodied in certain poetry: Yeats, Aquinas, Lamartine, etc. To achieve this, I intend to wed musical aspects of these texts with luminous microtonal harmonies, in hopes to create a sonic embodiment of their unspoken, spiritual “meaning.” In other words, I intend to create a sounding board from which the sentiments of the texts, without actually being spoken, can freely resonate in the listener. For this I plan to transcribe and orchestrate samples of the human voice—inflected speech, sighs, and song—so that the music flows directly from the sinew of genuine human expression.”
- Jesse Jones
Listen to excerpts of Joseph Lin playing Jones’s violin concerto, “For a Faded Mind,” with the Camerata Notturna: