For Bassoon & Piano
By Daniel Baldwin
Aeon: A Miniature Suite for Bassoon and Piano was written at the request of my very good friend, Carl Rath, who wanted a piece based on the very evocative wildlife photographs of Montana artist, Dick Forehand.We chose the title of the work together, Carl provided the photographs and movement titles, and I proceeded to set them to music.
In the opening movement, Rutting-Mating Call, the Moose is calling for a mate. The fanfare-like calls by the bassoon over rolled bitonal chords in the piano is inspired by the image of the moose standing in a field surrounded by fog and mist. All at once the moose finds a mate and the pursuit begins. They finally catch each other, and the rutting begins.....and ends.
Movement two, Birth-New Life, is a tender lullaby and love song to new life.
Movement three, AAH!-Simple Pleasures, is a comedic jaunt in the style of PDQ Bach and Victor Borge portraying a very simple pleasure in an over the top way. After the "Carnival of the Animals" intro, the music portrays the bear enjoying the day out for a stroll. Then comes the itch. The bear moves towards a tree where he begins to begins to scratch. This simple pleasure allows the bear to go back to enjoying the day.
Movement four, Soaring-The Good Life, portrays an eagle soaring against a breathtaking blue Montana sky. Could anything be more beautiful?!!
The finale, Perseverance-Enduring Life, is a commentary on the winter of life and life surviving winter. Just as we think life will end from the extreme depressing cold, spring arrives and new life is waiting to spring up once again.
Aeon was premiered by Carl Rath at the 41st International Double Reed Convention at Miami University of Ohio.