• vn, va
  • 8 min

Programme Note

5 November 2006
Vamos Duo
Grinnell College, Grinnell, IA

Composer note:
Silent Moon is a reference to the break in the stillness of winter that is indicative of a gathering of energy. Like the silence before the storm, the Silent Moon offers an opportunity to cleanse the past so that we might better shift our attentions to future growth.

This concept is often depicted through certain double-visaged gods and goddesses such as Janus, who looks simultaneously backward at the past and forward to the future.

A silent moon exists in the deep silence of winter earth after the solstice celebration heralding the birth of energy and the return of ever lengthening daylight.

This is a time for stillness.

The quality of this moon's energy is vivid.

Silent Moon was commissioned by, and is dedicated with admiration and gratitude to, Almita and Roland Vamos.

The duration of this work is eight minutes and is in three movements played without a pause. The music goes full-cycle, coming back to its exact starting point, as if we hear one orbit.

The program booklet should list the three movements in this fashion:

   I: Still: Soulful and Resonant
   II: Energetic: Majestic and Dramatic
   III: Suspended: Lyrical and Chant-like — "When twofold silence was the song of love."

— Augusta Read Thomas