Halcyon Days (score & parts)
Solo with Percussion Ensemble Solo with Percussion Ensemble (Solo Marimba (5-octave) Percussion 1 (Bells, Crotales, 2 Woodblocks, Tam-Tam [shared w/ Percussion. 4]) Percussion 2 (Vibraphone, China Cymbal, Bongos) Percussion 3 (Chimes, Bell Tree, Suspended Cymbal, 2 Brake Drums) Percussion 4 (Ocean Drum, Kick Bass D) - medium difficult
Solo Marimba Feature. Composed by Nathan Daughtrey. Score & parts. Duration 10:30. Published by C. Alan Publications (CN.19000).
Item Number: CN.19000
Halcyon Days tells the heartbreaking yet uplifting tale of Alcyone and Ceyx from Ovid's Metamorphoses. The tour-de-force solo marimba part seamlessly weaves in and out of the fabric of the accompanying quartet.
The phrase Halcyon Days (HAL-see-uhn) refers to a period of peace and tranquility. It can also harken back to an earlier time that is remembered as idyllic, whether accurately or not. I researched the mythological origins of this phrase to gather more inspiration for the piece. According to Ovid's Metamorphoses, Alcyone (al-SAHY-uh-nee) was the daughter of Aeolus (EE-uh-luhs), King of the Winds, and the wife of Ceyx (SEE-iks). Alcyone and Ceyx were very much in love and were never willingly apart. Ceyx decided he must make a long journey across the sea to consult the oracle of Apollo at Delphi. Knowing the danger of such a journey, Alcyone was overwhelmed with grief and terror and begged him not to go. Ceyx left anyway and died tragically in a shipwreck. The gods came to Alcyone in a dream and told her of her husband's death. Stricken with grief, she jumped into the sea, but the Gods took pity on her and before she could be overcome by the waves, she was transformed into a kingfisher (also called a halcyon). Ceyx was changed into a bird as well and their love was blessed for all time. In their honor, Zeus forbade the winds to blow for seven days prior to and seven days following the Winter Solstice so Alcyone & Ceyx could safely brood over their nests near the waters. Their tragic love story has given us the very word that means calm, contentment and happiness. The music follows the arc of the story fairly closely, dividing into six sections - Alcyone & Ceyx (m. 1-37), Ceyx at Sea (m. 38-90), Turbulent Waters (91-167), The Fall of Ceyx (m. 168-172), Metamorphosis (m. 173-201) & Halcyon Days (m. 202-end). The melodic/harmonic material is derived from 4 chords and pitch sets, which help to unify the piece. Halcyon Days was commissioned by a consortium of percussionists and educators that was organized by Josh Knight. CONSORTIUM MEMBERS Josh Knight (organizer) - University of Arkansas - Fort Smith Justin Alexander - Independent (FL) Caitlin Boxeur - Independent (OK) Lance Drege - University of Oklahoma School of Music Marques Eckhoff - Independent (IL) Tammy Fisher - University of Wisconsin-La Crosse (WI) Dave Gerhart - Bob Cole Conservatory of Music @ CSULB David Glover - Slippery Rock University (PA) Michael Haldeman - Charleston Southern University (SC) Carlos Johnson - Independent (TN) Matt Jordan - Independent (FL) Brandon Kelly - Independent (TX) Andy Kolar - Sacred Heart University (CT) Mike Lasley - North Carolina A&T University (NC) L. Keith Lloyd - McMurry University (TX) Gregory Lyons - Louisiana Tech University (LA) Rick Minnotte - Mt. Lebanon High School (PA) Delaina Oberman - Flint Institute of Music (MI) Michael Ptacin - Independent (NC) Bill Rice - James Madison University (VA) Lisa Rogers & Alan Shinn - Texas Tech University (TX) Michael Sekelsky - University of Central Missouri (MO) Tarleton State Percussion Club - University Stephenville, TX Eric Wellman - Lincoln-Way Central High School (IL).
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