The Haunted Palace (13')
Poem by Edgar Allen Poe
Soprano, Flute, Oboe, Clarinet in Bb, Violin, Viola,
Cello, Piano, Percussion (2)
Premiered: May 2009 by WWU students; Western Washington University Concert Hall, Bellingham, WA
"The Haunted Palace" tells the story of a palace that was once beautiful, but has since become barren and haunted, though many say that it is a metaphor for a man that has lost his sanity. The main theme, played by the violin in the beginning, resembles all that is good, while the 16th notes immediately afterward act as a fate motive, a reminder that there is no happy ending. A modified arc form occurs organically from the poem, as Poe describes how things used to be with beautiful imagery, and later describes how they are now with a haunting resonance. The work becomes more and more chaotic until the end, where all of the ghastly spirits escape out to wreak havoc and the screams of the man are drowned out by his own demons.
May 2010 by WWU Students; Western Washington University Concert Hall, Bellingham, WA