«Remote Galaxy» Op.81
A Symphonic Poem for Viola da gamba and Symphony Orchestra. Dedicated to Ralph Rousseau.
Category: Symphony Orchestra
Instrumentation: 2 flutes, 2 bassoons, Glass Harmonica, Tubular Bells, Timpani, Perc:2, Harp, Viola da gamba, Strings
Composer: Flint Juventino Beppe
Year composed: 2010
— It is not often that the Viola da gamba features as a solo instrument in contemporary music, and it is, perhaps, rather strange that so few composers today seem interested in the clean and delicate sound of this instrument, much loved and much used in baroque music. Flint Juventino Beppe is a musician who relishes going his own way and in «Remote Galaxy», where he takes us on a journey in sound, time and space, he chooses the viola da gamba, along with a glass harmonica, as his equipage, so to speak. In «Remote Galaxy» time has become an abstract and relative term. Since the galaxy is billions of light years away from us, we see it as it was billions of years ago; its present time is also its past time, and therefore in this context our own "now" becomes mind-bogglingly irrelevant. It is this profound philosophical standpoint, a hallmark of Beppe, that moulds a narrow, highly concentrated perception of sound – at times chillingly cold, at times red hot. Beppe's music always embodies an element of dualism, more so in this particular composition than ever before.
Wolfgang Plagge, professor
Recorded for the album Remote Galaxy by Rousseau and Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy.