Thomas: Blackboard Drawings

Thomas: Blackboard Drawings
Rudolf Steiner: early 20th-century Austrian philosopher, literary scholar, educator, and social thinker. Founder of Anthroposophy — a movement that marries spiritual thought and awareness with human development. Through extensive lectures and accompanying illustrative drawings, Steiner's innovative teachings touched many areas of thought — economics, religion, science, medicine, and the arts. His drawings (sketched on paper covering a lecturer's blackboard) are considered highly singular art, and are housed at the Rudolph Steiner Archives in Dornach, Switzerland. It is here — in Dornach — where Augusta Read Thomas will be for the 28 November premiere of her new trio The Soul is Light.

"'Rudolf Steiner's blackboard drawings are a huge inspiration to me," Thomas explains. Commissioned by the Steiner Archives, The Soul is Light takes its name from Steiner's drawing of the same title. "From out of a timeless universe within a black background," Thomas reflects, "Steiner's beautiful work with its colorful, vivid lines (which look and feel as if they are still in motion by the hand that drew them) remind us of a spiritual world. Some objects are close, others timelessly far away. Shapes are improvisatory, yet concrete....This trio lasts just a brief time during which materials evolve, transform and shift from calm to bold, ritualistic to elegant, and majestic to playful."
Augusta Read Thomas
The Soul is Light   8'
Violin, oboe, harp
Prior to the Dornach premiere, Thomas travels to Germany to attend lectures and portrait concerts as she serves a brief composer residency at the Musikseminars Hamburg. Thomas's next world premiere takes place on 18 January 2007, as pianist Lang Lang presents Traces, at the Montalvo Arts Center in Saratoga, CA.