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Wendy Bartlett Compositions - The Drowning Pool (2005 - 2006)

The Drowning Pool (2005-2006) – Chamber Orchestra

Movement I - Prelude

Movement II - O, to be Heard!

Movement III - The Last Battle

Movement IV - Life Goes On

Movement V - Where There is Love

This was Wendy's first major orchestral work, a five movement programmatic symphony for chamber orchestra. This piece was premiered on March 15, 2007 at Wendy's senior recital in the Performing Arts Center concert hall at Western Washington University.

 

I. Prelude. Solo flute (portraying Wendy), hesitantly starts to tell a tale of having survived an abusive married relationship, prompted by the piano (narrator). This is a brief introduction of the story in the following four movements.

 

II. O, to be Heard! Solo flute tells her story; other instruments are other people in the story (piccolo portrays her guardian angel). Movement two reflects upon the escalation of tension as a soft-spoken flute tries to be heard over her overpowering spouse (five brass instruments: french horn, trumpets 1 and 2, trombone and tuba). Flute's family and friends come to visit. Unfortunately, an emotional outburst by the abusive spouse makes for an awkward scene among the rest of the orchestra (guests). Guests depart, worried about Flute's safety. Flute is left wondering where is the love?

 

III. The Last Battle. This is the point of combustion in which the long-abused Flute 1 realizes she has had enough and isn't just going to fight/argue any more. However, her abusive spouse wants just that and Flute 1, with only Piccolo to help her, must defend herself against her spouse's (brass section) unprovoked attacks.

 

After knocking her spouse unconscious, Flute realizes they've reached rock-bottom and that she must get help in ending the unhealthy situation. The final section reflects a horrified Flute 1 as the music accelerates to depict a bedroom spinning wildly. "Somebody help me!" is the last phrase by Flute 1 at the end of the movement.

 

IV. Life Goes On. A lot of things must be resolved for Flute to get divorced, safely moved to a loving, safe environment, sell the house she and her spouse had, get out of debt and get on with her life. Slowly, the orchestral sections and soloists emerge to offer assistance (i.e. the clarinet is a lawyer; the oboe portrays a concerned neighbor; solo cello and violin portray Flute 1's parents). In the latter third of movement IV, Flute 1 and Piccolo attend a support group (Flute 2, 3, 4, alto, and bass flute).

 

After Flute 1 resolves her life-threatening conflict, the orchestra unites in its message that domestic violence will not be tolerated in their community. An attaca from 4/4 to 6/8 at the end of movement IV goes directly into movement V, Where There is Love.

 

V. Where There is Love. This is the triumphantly conclusive final movement, which showcases Flute 1, Piccolo, and the entire orchestra in a D Major reprise of the original whole-tone scale melody in movement I, Prelude. The entire orchestra goes in a full circle of fifths (D to G to C to F to B flat to E flat......and so on). Solo violin (Flute's mother) starts the progression in D Major the first time around. Flute 1 has the D Major solo the second time. There is a cadenza shared by Flute 1, Piccolo and Piano in 3 bars in 4/4 time before the return to 6/8 and the final ending chords.

Short Synopsis

The Drowning Pool, a five-movement orchestral suite, dramatically tells of a dark chapter of Wendy's life in which she survived an abusive relationship. All instruments in the orchestral ensemble portray specific people (or groups of people) in the telling of this story.

 

I. Prelude, which features only Piano and Flute 1, serves as a brief introduction to the recollection of what happened. Piano, as Narrator, encourages Flute I to share her story. She is at first reluctant. After all, it was an awkward time in her life. Piano reassures Flute 1 that she is among friends, reminding her of the good that sharing her experience can do for others in her position, and that doing so can also increase public awareness.

Flute 1 hesitantly agrees to come forward, and the story begins.

 

II. O, to be Heard! depicts a social gathering of Flute’s family, friends, relatives, and neighbors. Piano introduces Flute l’s family: Solo Violin is Flute l’s Mother; Solo Cello plays the role of Flute l’s Father; Timpani, Solo Viola, and Bassoon represent Flute l’s three older siblings. Piccolo represents Flute l’s Guardian Angel. Horn in F portrays an Uncle; Trumpet l and Alto Saxophone are old high school friends, happily married. Trumpet 2 is an Aunt, and both Tenor and Bass Trombone portray Cousins l & 2. The Tenor Saxophone represents an Old College Friend and close confidante to Flute 1; Oboe portrays a Concerned Neighbor who lives across the street from Flute 1, and hears and sees a bit more than what she’d like to. All other Strings portray the people in the surrounding community: the passing police officer driving by in a patrol car, the woman with a baby, jogging; the young man leaving for work, kids going to school, etc. All Brass instruments loudly and aggressively played together depict the Abused Wife’s (Flute l’s) Abusive Spouse.

 

It may seem like a jovial, lighthearted get-together, but it really isn’t. Piano, as Narrator, opens with a purposefully distorted “Winchester Chimes-like” theme. What appears to be happy suburban life for Flute is only a cruel facade. Family members, friends and relatives enter Flute l’s house talking. Flute l seems happy, but......! The visitors are about to have their worst already suspected fears confirmed when All Brass suddenly reprimands Flute 1 violently in front of the others. All Brass then goads Flute l into starting a heated argument. Flute 1 does, but realizes her mistake a little too late. By raising her voice and yelling back, she has been reduced to All Brass 's level. Timpani, a survivor of an abusive marriage herself, has warned Flute 1 many times about All Brass’s controlling, manipulative behavior. She is angry that Flute 1 remains oblivious to the increasingly dangerous situation. This could have been prevented. Again, another gathering is ruined. Family, friends, and relatives all leave with mounting discomfort and concern for Flute l’s health and safety. Last to depart are Solo Cello, Solo Violin, and Oboe, who tell Flute 1 very concernedly that ‘if she needs anything, she knows where to find them’. The second movement ends with a grim D augmented-11th Piano chord, and All Strings talking amongst themselves (“He treats her like garbage and she goes back for more!” “My kids won’t walk past their house; he scares them!” “What does she see in him?” “She deserves a lot better!” etc.). Flute 1 fearfully asks Piccolo, “Where is the love?” Piccolo grimly answers, “Certainly not here.” Where is the gallant handsome prince Flute 1 married?

 

III. The Last Battle is the grim point of combustion in which everything has hit rock-bottom for Flute 1. Piano opens with an open-stringed glissando, loudly resonating to give a forebodingly menacing effect, followed by a fast series of high D’s to depict Flute 1’s heart rapidly beating. Flute 1 has awakened after another poor night’s sleep to discover that her spouse is not there (once again, he passed out on the sofa the night before and never went to bed). An eerie downward 1st Violin glissando signifies a creaky door leading to the hallway. Flute l calls out to her spouse but hears nothing. She decides to quietly fix breakfast. She knows better than to wake him.

 

She has been unable to sleep lately. Holding down a job of any kind is next to impossible; he frequently stops by her workplace to “check up on her”. As a result, she is often late for work or appointments, frequently let go by disgruntled employers, and is afraid of her own shadow.

 

Nothing she says or does is good enough anymore. Everything makes him mad, from how the eggs were prepared to why the **** didn’t the laundry get done? Flute l has very little energy to do much of anything. She is lonely, isolated, and depressed. Telling her spouse this does no good. He believes that it is HE who is “the victim” here, and his long-suffering wife along with the rest of the world owes him big.

 

All Brass (Abusive Spouse) indeed, awakens in a sour mood, mocking Flute l’s every meek word. The ugly cycle continues on this dark morning. He is brash and threatening; she cowers, giving in to his harsh, abusive demands.

 

And yet...something is decidedly not quite right here, and Flute 1 is beginning to realize that there’s no sense in arguing with an arguer. So this time, instead of raising her voice, she refuses to get dragged into another dispute (notice Flute l’s softened dynamics). All Brass heatedly challenges Flute l several times, but she leaves the kitchen after Washing the breakfast dishes, calmly declaring that she “isn’t going to argue, and she’ll be in the next room”. She sighs, pouring herself a coffee refill, and retreats to the bedroom to watch TV. At least her beloved cat will keep her company. Piccolo (Guardian Angel) warns Flute 1 not to go to the bedroom to lie down. There are no back doors! The windows have been barricaded by large screens to shield outside light, and there is no other place to hide. The Cello section has a series of marcato notes to indicate the approach of heavy running footsteps coming down the hallway. The cat, with one horrified look at Flute 1, suddenly leaps off the bed, seeking sanctuary underneath where he cannot be hurt or threatened. Alienated from family, friends and neighbors (First Violins have an eerie high pitched repeating series of string glissandos for a police siren effect), Flute 1 realizes that she has only Piccolo to help her—almost too late. There is a pause after Piccolo’s admonishment, immediately followed by heavy running footsteps (played by the Cellos), and THEN-------!!!!!! Out of nowhere, in Measure 52, All Brass brutally attacks Flute l, completely unprovoked. There is a violent struggle on the bed as she is pinned down, and can’t breathe or scream for help as he attempts to strangle her. All she can do is scratch, kick, squirm, or bite to try to get him to stop. With mounting horror, she realizes that he hasn’t changed as he has kept promising her over and over, SHE has! He’s not going to change! He is enjoying this with a sickly pleasure! Flute 1 struggles desperately to break free, trying to get away (notice the climbing sporadic notes in Flute l’s high octave range). Piccolo, repulsed by All Brass’s malevolence, intervenes in a high-pitched duet with Flute l. Together they fend off All Brass with one final shove in self defense. Shocked into amazement by Flute l’s sudden burst of superhuman strength (undoubtedly fueled by adrenaline!), All Brass has a crashing sforzando chord, immediately followed by a dropping glissando, dissolving into a Timpani (with suspended cymbal) roll. The Abusive Spouse (All Brass) drops senselessly to the bedroom floor upon having the wind knocked out of him, rolling to one last thud in front of a bureau dresser.

 

After another grand pause, it sinks in for Flute 1. What has she done? What kind of a wife is she? She’s knocked out her own husband! All becomes mind-numbing chaos by Measure 72. As the 1st Violins continue their eerie string glissando, other strings, particularly the 2nd violins, violas and cellos, play a series of accelerating repeated phrases while basses continue with a haunting drone. These represent previously spoken wedding vows (“For sickness and in health”, “For better or for worse”, “So long as you both shall live”, syllabically). Stirred up bad memories of things said and done haunt Flute 1; the tempo quickens to double speed (quarter note = 144). Timpani (Sibling l) pleads rhythmically with Flute 1: “Promise me you won’t turn sixty with this man...” Piano (Narrator) also has a series of accented repeated eighth notes getting faster and faster. All this depicts the bedroom spinning wildly out of control, in a direct parallel to Flute l’s life having done just that—turned upside down. Flute l has the last phrase on beats 3 and 4 of Measure 83: “SOMEBODY HELP ME!” played in a series of eighth note triplets and regular eighth notes. The final bar of The Last Battle, Measure 84, is nothing but total silence, held by a fermata. Flute l’s facade of a having a perfect “fairytale marriage” has been permanently and irreparably shattered.

 

The ugly truth has surfaced; abuse is anything but pretty.

 

IV. Life Goes On. After a fermata at the end of Movement III, there is a period of shocked assessment among the strings, timpani, and piano, now joined by Harp (the voice of God). Oboe calls out to Flute l, who runs blindly past her desperately seeking shelter and safe refuge. Flute l asks herself: has she gone mad? No, she’s finally come to her senses.

 

The first fifty-seven bars, in 4/4 time, Grave; quarter note = 60, indicate that Flute l has hit rock-bottom. Flute 1 returns to a place where she knows she is safe: her parents’ house. Solo Cello and Solo Violin (along with everyone else!) knew that something was wrong with this picture. They had been hoping that Flute 1 would admit to it sooner. They invite Flute 1 to come into the kitchen, sit down, and tell what had just happened, where Flute 1 breaks down sobbing. She has no home. She is not safe. She has no job and is deep in debt. Together the trio reaches the conclusion that things cannot remain as they are, and that the situation will have to change drastically before anything gets better.

 

Other family members show up at the house: Timpani (Sibling l) addresses Flute 1 again, reminding her that “I warned you!” Solo Viola (Sibling 2) offers to help put some of Flute l’s belongings into storage, and promises to stay in touch. Piano and Strings join in, talking among themselves (“she’d be smart to get out of that relationship!” “He needs to take an anger management course”, etc.). Bassoon (Sibling 3, is calling their parents long distance, and is appalled, upon hearing about it from Solo Viola, at finding out what is going on) has a telephone conversation with Solo Viola, answering the phone, who gets abruptly and rudely cut off by All Brass as the abusive spouse comes barreling into the house like a bull in a china shop, angrily demanding his wife’s whereabouts. He is stopped in mid-roar by Solo Cello and Solo Violin, (Flute l has gone to the family room to lie down, accompanied by Piccolo), who obviously forbid him to venture any further. How dare he crash into their house and threaten their daughter (let alone anyone else)?!?

 

Solo Cello is particularly livid; he’s ready to kill his emotionally unhinged son-in-law from hell with his bare hands, but has the sickening knowledge that if he did, HE'D be the one going to prison! When All Brass demands “Where is she?” Solo Cello responds, “How dare you even enter our house after what you’ve done? We’ve got a sick daughter in the next room!” (Flute 1 from the other room, hears her abusive spouse and cries out in horror, “Is there nowhere safe?” in a dramatic upward run; Piccolo consoles her: “He won’t get in here.”). Solo Cello is then heard with two following angry phrases addressing All Brass. He is very disappointed in his son-in-law (how dare that degenerate call him Father?!?), while Solo Violin, carefully guarding the entrance to the hallway leading into the family room, reads All Brass his rights in a rapid downward series of chromatic triplet sixteenth notes “How dare you enter our house and come at us so viciously...NO, you can 't see her!.....etc.”

 

For once, possibly in all his embittered, emotionally unstable life, All Brass is nearly speechless. This is one time he can’t get his way by bullying and yelling at people, and is humbled to speaking in a lower tone of voice. Solo Violin has one last grim comment: “What ever possessed you to do what you did?” All Brass is then reduced to stuttering and faltering, finally says his goodbyes, and leaves the house.

 

Piano and Harp, with All Strings (other than soloists) have a downward F minor run in Bar 56. Flute 1 sadly asks, “How could something like this go so wrong?” completing the F minor chord, which slows (ritardando), and is held by a fermata in Bar 57. [End of Grave; quarter note =60].

 

Measure 58 has a new time meter and tempo: Allegro: quarter note = dotted quarter note; dotted quarter note = 120 (brisk march). Meter changes to 12/8 time.

 

Time marches on, as the tempo change indicates. All strings have a call and response back-and-forth series of fragmented phrases (“Hey did you know? Flute 1 moved out!” “She left him!” “Can you imagine?”...etc.). Flute l, Solo Violin, and Solo Cello meet up with Clarinet (Lawyer) to discuss initiating the dissolution of Flute 1’s disastrous marriage.

 

Clarinet (Lawyer) agrees to take the case, but under certain conditions: Flute 1 will have to move north (even temporarily in with her parents if necessary) in order to be under the same jurisdiction. Although it is understandably painful and awkward to do so, Flute 1 will have to tell Clarinet everything. Communication must be kept open in order for Clarinet to adequately represent Flute 1 legally. Clarinet also suggests that Flute 1 seek some counseling as well (through Xylophone, the Social Worker) as enroll in a displaced homemaker’s course at the local community college. She also needs to get a job; by being employed and thus more in a position to pay off debts, Flute 1’s case will be even more plausible.

 

The unhappily married couple’s house must be sold. In addition, she must also file for legal separation, and, if need be, file a restraining order against her spouse (in Washington State, a minimum of 90 days must pass before a divorce can be declared final).

 

There is further discussion among the foursome. Solo Cello curiously asks Clarinet, “Have you taken on many abuse cases before?” and is surprised to hear Clarinet say yes. Clarinet, however, is only too happy to do so. Of abusers: “They’re my lunch.”

 

So it is carefully planned. While her husband is away on business, Flute 1 is to put the house up for sale. She will move in temporarily with her parents, and get a summer job.

 

The neighborhood stirs up again upon notice of the house on the comer going on the market. Oboe, curious about what is currently happening in Flute l’s life, asks her what’s going on (she can’t help but see people—i.e.: Solo Violin, Solo Cello, Alto Sax, and Trumpet l—helping Flute 1 move out). Flute 1 isn’t around the neighborhood as much. People ask what will happen when he gets back from his trip? Alto Sax and Trumpet 1, upon helping Flute 1 move out, ask her why she didn’t go to the police. Flute 1 simply answers that “they wouldn’t have responded in time.” Alto Sax and Trumpet 1 also wonder why Flute 1 isn’t taking a lot of stuff with her, except valuable papers, checkbook, savings, cash on hand, her cat, personal belongings, and whatever else she can fit into her car. Flute l’s answer is simple: she’s not sure where she’ll be living. As an adult, she’ll want her own place to live eventually once she can afford to do so.

 

And so it goes among the ensemble back and forth. Flute l’s Social worker (Xylophone) even has a little exchange with Piccolo (“Jiminy Cricket meets Tinker bell”: “Listen to me!” “No, listen to me!” “NO, listen to ME!” “Well!” etc.). Clarinet keeps contact with Flute 1, answering questions that arise.

 

Then, at about mid-movement, All Brass returns home from his trip out of town to discover (!!!!) that his house is for sale! Where is his wife?? What 's this?? Where are her belongings? Her car’s gone! Where's that blasted cat?? All Brass gets a whopper of a surprise: a divorce petition and a sombering message from Clarinet: he can’t do what he’s routinely done to Flute 1 any longer. Slowly, a murmur of consensus builds from within the ensemble. Oboe (Concerned Neighbor) smugly comes forward in brief phrases, telling All Brass, “Don’t look at me. You once had a wife who cared.” Trumpet 2 (Aunt), with Tenor and Bass Trombones (Cousins 1 & 2), and Horn in F (Uncle), grouped with Bassoon (Sibling 3) and Tenor Sax (Old College Friend), form trios expressing their views that it’s about time Flute 1 came to her senses! Timpani also expresses relief, though she wishes that the situation had never happened in the first place.

 

All Brass grudgingly meets with Flute 1, Clarinet, and Xylophone to put marriage dissolution settlements on the table, in hopes of reaching an agreement. Clarinet and Xylophone make it clear to All Brass: “We are here to represent your wife, not you.”

 

It is here that All Brass realizes that he has lost his wife for good; there is no chance she’ll ever return to him. All Brass has one final desperate plea, begging Flute l to take him back one last time, but it falls on deaf ears. She is beginning to realize how much better she is without him.

 

Finally, after what seems to go on listlessly (the waiting, the meetings with legal counsel, selling the house, getting out of debt, moving into a new apartment, etc.) that Clarinet has some breaking news for Flute 1: “He signed the papers this morning; you’re free.” However, it doesn’t quite sink in for Flute 1. So Clarinet reiterates, with slightly increased dynamics: “Congratulations, Flute 1. Your spouse signed your final papers. You’re legally divorced.” Piccolo intervenes, suggesting that Clarinet speak a little louder; “perhaps Flute 1 still didn’t hear you”. So Clarinet does, at forte dynamics: “HE SIGNED THE PAPERS—YOU’RE FREE.”

 

Flute 1 is speechless with amazement. Is she REALLY free?? Can she fix scrambled eggs from now on WITHOUT stomach-upsetting hot sauce forcibly dumped all over them?? Can she actually enjoy classical music and not get blasted out by overpowering WWF Wrestling events loudly emulating from the living room TV? Can she finally get a good night’s sleep after all these years in the comfort and safety of a stable, loving home once again? Flute l has an emotional cadenza followed by relieved reactions from family, friends and neighbors.

 

There is a brief interlude that precedes Piccolo and Flute 1 about a year later, attending a support group meeting. The dotted quarter note tempo slows a little at Bar 157 to a speed of 112, introducing Flutes 2, 3, and 4, Alto and Bass Flute. Flutes 2, 3, and 4 are also battered victims. They are currently still experiencing what Flute 1 recently survived. Alto Flute is a guidance counselor, and Bass Flute is the director of the battered women’s shelter in which the meeting is being held. Flute 2 opens the meeting with a particularly disheartening story. Her husband kept threatening her in front of the kids, who fled to their rooms. He beat her, cracking a few ribs and cutting her lip. In the midst of the loud exchange between the two of them someone in the apartment building apparently had called the police. The cops arrived—just in time to see Flute 2 hitting back in self-defense. So, guess what? Not her abusive spouse, but Flute 2 gets escorted to jail, and the state’s Child Protection Services takes away Flute 2’s two small children, branding her “an unfit parent”!

 

Flute 3 has an equally sad tale to share. Having had no choice but to leave a hometown in a native state 2,000 miles away, Flute 3 has had to completely start over in relocating, knowing almost nobody here. With no family support and four children to raise alone ranging in ages from a year and a half to fourteen, Flute 3 can barely make ends meet as a single parent. Alimony would be nice, financially, but Flute 3 knows it’ll never happen. Flute 3’s violent former spouse was a drug dealer and addict. The marriage was a nightmare from the start, and Flute 3 is just glad that, no matter how many legal problems that have surfaced between both states, the ex-spouse has no idea of Flute 3’s (or the children’s) current whereabouts.

 

Flute 4 starts to tell her story, but time has run out in the hourly session. Flutes 2 and 3 interrupt, and a lively debate (not a fight, but nonetheless, it gets interesting) ensues. Soon the members of the group are divided: some say yes, others say no. At this point, Oboe, Alto Sax, Clarinet, Flute 1, Piccolo, and others join in, all admonishing, “DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU!” Flute 1 is then hesitant to say any more. She’s recently resolved her once life-threatening situation. She’s out of a toxic situation. What can she possibly add to this meeting’s discussion without unintentionally inviting bitterness and hostility from the other three current victims? Still, Bass Flute encourages Flute 1 to speak up just before the meeting’s adjournment.

 

To Flute l’s pleasant surprise, Flutes 2, 3, and 4, eagerly come forward to hear more of what Flute 1 has to say. (“You survived? You mean there’s a way out of this hellhole?” “Who did you talk to? You must have had a good lawyer!” “How did you get out of debt?” “What’s this ‘Displaced Homemaker’s Association’?” “What’s Soroptimist?” “Do they have affordable childcare?” “How did you get health insurance?” “There’s actually hope for us?” etc.).

 

With this, the entire orchestral ensemble unites as the community bands together in support of all victims of domestic violence, changing meter briefly in Measure 190 to 4/4, quarter note = 112. Momentum swells as Solo Violin, Solo Viola, Solo Cello, Timpani, Bassoon, Alto Sax and Trumpet l, Tenor Sax, Horn in F, Trumpet 2, Tenor and Bass Trombone, Oboe, Clarinet, Piano, Harp, Xylophone, and Strings join Piccolo, Flutes 1,2,3,4, Alto and Bass Flute.

 

Flute l has the last phrase in movement IV, Life Goes On, in a slowing series of eighth notes at a ritardando up the D major scale: “Now I am free to just be......”. There is an attaca, signaling the fourth movement’s continuation into Movement V: Where There is Love, switching time meter back to 6/8; dotted quarter note = 72.

 

V. Where There is Love. Time and tempo: Expressively; 6/8; dotted quarter = 72. The fifth movement begins where the fourth movement most recently leaves off. Flute l finishes her statement with an accented eighth note D in Bar 1: “...me.” She is learning to become more self-sufficient; she is back in school, and holding down a job. She recently got a small raise in salary, which afforded her the first vacation she’d been able to take in years. She recently had a high school reunion. Everyone commented on how wonderful she looked (and how glad they were that she’d dumped “what’s his name”!).

 

Where There is Love transposes to the key of concert D major, and proceeds in a circle of fifths cycle after a brief introduction involving Piano, Harp, Solo Violin, Solo Viola, Solo Cello, Xylophone, and others. Piano has a brief interlude that leads to Solo Violin’s reprise of the familiar eighth-note phrase used in past segments of the suite. This time, however, the melody line is in D major, leading to G major to C major to F major......etc. Various other soloing instruments, pairs, or sections take over the melody line and/or intersperse in musical dialogue. The circle of fifths continues to Bar 57 returning to D major, but this time, Flute 1 solos. The other flutes and Piccolo join Flute l, talking and doing something they couldn't do previously: laugh out loud! The cycle continues up to E flat major, with Oboe and Clarinet having the last soloing melody line before a brief meter change to 4/4 which then modulates to an E minor seventh chord on the Piano, progressing diatonically at Bar 70 with only Piccolo and Flute 1 to Bars 71 & 72, at a ritardando where the trio has the line, “Here is where there is...(love)”. Bassoon has an eighth note pick-up to Bar 73, which changes back to 6/8 meter a tempo, and leads the rest of the orchestral ensemble back in to the closing phrase, which consists of three triads: D major, A major, and E major building a dramatic pyramid. Harp and Piano ascend the D major scale together, to depict an ascent into heaven metaphorically speaking; Timpani beats a steady series of eighth notes triumphantly (“Where there is hope, there is joy, there is love.”), ending with another timpani roll with suspended cymbal, bell down. Low strings, and low brass forms the D major chord; high brass, Alto Sax, Oboe, and solo Viola offer the A major chord added; higher Winds and strings add the E major crown atop the D-major—thirteen polychord pyramid. Piccolo has the last phrase of everyone, spoken to Harp: (“Now, about my wings...”). After all, she has worked very hard for them!

 

Nonetheless, the finale is a joyful one where there is indeed love.

The Not-So-Short Synopsis

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