Commissioned by the NHK Symphony Orchestra

  • 3333/4331/5perc/pf/str(
  • 15 min

Programme Note

What is a Sanctuary? Perhaps a sanctuary is a place where our soul can return to, not just a religious place, or geographically specified sacred area.

War has been part of human life since time began: has this been to defend our sanctuary? With repeated destruction and cause for sorrow, has the sanctuary of our soul been lost, or is sanctuary just an illusion?

I have used sound analysis within my works since I moved to Paris, sixteen years ago. This enables me to create my own works using various colours of sound and let nature and ecology influence my work. The shock of September 11th 2001 made me look at the history of human war: it has resulted in a direct influence on the music I write.

The sound of bells and cello at the beginning are the axis of the whole piece. The bells establish a regular pulse progressing into phrases with various scales. The shorter percussion beat resemble machine guns and are replaced in the middle section by a piano. The last section reflects my hope in the search for the lost sanctuary, but it remains an unanswered question and dissolves with the sound of bells at the end.

Lost Sanctuary was commissioned by the NHK Symphony Orchestra. It was first performed by the NHK Symphony Orchestra conducted by Tadaaki Otaka, at the Sumida Triphony Hall in Tokyo, on 18th July 2002. This work is dedicated to Tadaaki Otaka.