Piano Concerto No. 2 “After Lewis & Clark”
Music by Philip Glass
1 fl., 1 cl., 1 ob., 1 bassoon, 1 trumpet, 2 horns, strings, 1 percussion
The Nebraska Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Commission, the Lied Center for Performing Arts, and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Hixson-Lied College of Fine and Performing Arts.
September 18, 2004 at Lied Center for Performing Arts in Lincoln, Nebraska (USA) by Paul Barnes (piano), and R. Carlos Nakai (Native American flute) with Omaha Symphony Orchestra conducted by Victor Yampolsky.
The concerto is written in the traditional three movements. The first movement entitled “The Vision” is based on Lewis and Clark and was described by Glass as a “musical steamroller” signifying the tremendous resolve and energy required of Lewis and Clark for their remarkable expedition. It is scored for piano, single woodwinds, brass, strings and percussion.
The second movement “Sacagawea” is scored for strings only and features a duet between the piano and the Native American flute. The movement is based on Sacagawea, Shoshone Indian, mother, and indispensable companion to Lewis and Clark. The opening theme in the flute is a musical representation of the name ‘Sacagawea.’
The third and final movement entitled “The Land” is a gloriously expansive theme and variations reflecting the great vastness of the land explored by Lewis and Clark. And this expansiveness refers not only to the vast area involved, but the expanse of time over which the land has evolved. As Glass commented in our final working session on the concerto in July of 2004, “I wanted this final movement to reflect also the expanse of time – what the land was before the expedition and what it became after.”
— Paul Barnes
Dunvagen Music Publishers