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Maayani, AmiQumran (1970) 16'
Orchestral excerpts from the opera-oratorio 'The War of the Sons of Light against the Sons of Dakness'

Scoring
2.picc.2.corA.2.bcl.2.dbn-6.4.3.1-timp.perc(4)-2harps-cel-strings.
Abbreviations (PDF).

Territory
This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.

World Premiere
7/18/1971
Jerusalem
Israel Philharmonic Orchestra / Zubin Mehta


Programme Note  
The ‘Symphonic Metaphor’ Qumran is based on the findings of the lost Scrolls of Essene sect in the Qumran Caves, on the Northwestern shores of the Dead Sea. The Essenes were an apocalyptic sect that existed in the early days of Christianity. A highly austere sect, they believed in the essence of Judaism, but the core of their faith was belief in the Day of Judgment, when the Sons of Light shall vanquish the Sons of Darkness.

In the Judean Desert a pilgrim is facing the Qumran Caves. He hears the prayers and chants of the Essenes. The middle section portrays the apocalyptic battle in sound rising and falling as described in the Scroll of the war. The vision of the final Judgment spreads when the battle is over. The slow opening theme emerges but fades out into the eternal stillness of the desert.

Qumran was the first Israeli composition performed in Germany post World War II.

Press Quotes      Deutsch
"Das dreiteilige Stück ist mit eminenter Klangphantasie für ein differenziertes Orchester geschrieben. Es beginnt langsam mit tonal indifferenten, weitmaschig gesetzten Akkorden von großem atmosphärischem Reiz. Aus ihrer Statik lösen sich motivische Gestalten, von denen eine aus steigender Quart und fallendem Ganzton den lebhaften Mittelteil und die Reprise beherrscht. Taktwechsel und asymmetrische Rhythmen Kennzeichnen den Still, der in Bläsermelismen orientalischen Charakter, doch auch viel eigene Handschrift zeigt. Grundtönen oft zustrebend, eher modal als tonal, ist die Sprache unverkennbar modern, ohne einer der gängigen Avantgarden anzugehören. Der Komponist konnte für den starken Erfolg danken." (Hans Heinz Stuckenschmidt, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 14 Sep 1971)

Recommended Recording
The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra / Eliahu Inbal
FONS 36-2008




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