This work may performed with video or with audio only. In both cases it is left to the discretion of the performers whether or not to amplify the ensemble. The audio sent by the publisher has 5 channels: front left and right, back left and right, and a center channel which contains a click track which should be routed to an earpiece for one or more of the players (or conductor). The score includes cue lines which approximate the electronics part. For all performances with video, a Max patch supplied by the publisher is required to run the setup.
The overall character of Next Atlantis, for string quartet and pre-recorded sound, is one of sustained quietude, peacefulness, and serenity, but with a sense of emptiness and loss not far off. It is an elegy for a future that must not happen: New Orleans has been submerged under water. Sounds of water, both above and below the surface, pervade the piece. The water is an idealized water, often electronically sculpted into melodies and chords. The string orchestra maintains a dialogue with these muted sounds. The orchestra imitates the sounds of water and the water itself takes on vestiges of the players’ harmonies. Intertwined with these sounds is the faint, ghostly echo of fragments from Bourbon Street Parade, here subdued into quiet disembodied strains that rise to the surface like bubbles from a sunken shipwreck. It is a new Atlantis, not of the mythic past, but one of the too possible future.
— Sebastian Currier
This program note may be reproduced free of charge in concert programs with a credit to the composer.