Southern Theatre, Columbus, Ohio
ProMusica Chamber Orchestra / Timothy Russell
TELL MY FORTUNE for Orchestra
Tell My Fortune (2004) for orchestra was commissioned for the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra of Columbus, Ohio, to commemorate the orchestra's 25th Anniversary and is dedicated to Barbara K. Fergus, Loann W. Crane, and the National Endowment for the Arts in appreciation of their generous sponsorship. The work was premiered by the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Timothy Russell on April 3 and 4, 2004 at the Southern Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. Duration is 25 minutes.
Tell My Fortune is a concerto for orchestra, which visits the dark world of gypsies and their methods of fortune telling: reading palms, tarot cards and gazing into crystal balls. In the first movement, entitled “Palm,” I read the lines, marks, and patterns of a hand as though it were a musical staff. Mysterious fanfares and melodies are framed by chimes, sleigh bells, water gong, and bowed vibraphone. “Crystal” features the flute and alto flute in a haunting duet of extended flute techniques such as fluttering and bending of notes. The strings provide rhythmic counterpoint, while two percussionists play tuned crystal glasses and wind chimes. After a dramatic cello solo, the third movement, entitled “Card,” unfolds like a deck of tarot cards, shuffled and spread across the table. The movement ends in an exciting swirl of eastern intrigue and relentless tambourine rhythms.