• John Tavener
  • Mahashakti (2003)

  • Chester Music Ltd (World)

Commissioned by the Megaron Concert Hall, Athens

  • tamstr [8.8.6.6.3 or 5.5.3.3.1]
  • violin
  • 20 min

Programme Note

The Sanskrit word Shakti signifies a celestial Feminine Energy that allows man to enter into contact with the Divine, by aiding and attracting. She aids as Mother and attracts as Virgin. Although Shakti is a Hindu concept, Shaktism clearly has a universal significance, since the concept of the Eternal Feminine is present in all great and primordial traditions. According to Hindu metaphysics, the Mahāshakti is the supreme Shakti, and only through her can man aspire to the infinite.

The solo violin represents both Shakti and Mahāshakti, and should express in its playing (as should the strings), both ecstatic and contemplative qualities. The music is both rapturous and hieratical - rapturous in the passionate and gentle lines, and hieratical in the ritual striking of the very large tam-tam, which should sound from the centre of the platform. The tam-tam should never dominate, but rather, the solo violin and strings should reverberate from its sounds.

Listen

Mahãshakti: Shakti
Mahãshakti: Mahãshakti

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