• Joan Tower
  • White Water (String Quartet No. 5) (2011)

  • Associated Music Publishers Inc (World)
  • 2vn, va, vc
  • 20 min

Programme Note

First performance
April 14 2012
Daedalus String Quartet
Chamber Music Monterey Bay
Carmel, CA

White Water is the first of four commissions for Chamber Music Monterey Bay's "Arc of Life" project. The artist Bill Viola shared excerpts from his video installation "Going Forth by Day" — a depiction of life in all its stages — with the four commissioned composers to serve as their inspirational focal point. The Bill Viola Studio will make still images from "Going Forth by Day" available to presenters for their audiences at performances of these pieces.

Composer note
When I saw [Bill] Viola's work, I was quite fascinated with how he used water as an encompassing image which influenced everything I saw about the "person" inside the water. My piece is not directly associated by what he specifically did but it does have a strong connection to the image of water as a powerful basic idea and action. The many glissandos hopefully create a "fluid" environment that connects the various ideas and registers together, while "white water" somehow implies more rapid "cascading" types of action which occur throughout the piece.

— Joan Tower