Each trail for a realm (2017)

for quintet

My composition Each trail for a realm (2017) was commissioned by IConArts for a quintet of flute, vibraphone, piano, violin, and cello.
The composition reflects on a specific statue commemorating the World War 1 soldiers from the Militari suburb of Bucharest. Wars have been a common experience for all Europeans and those wars, athough they had different political backgrounds and interpretations of national narratives, boil down to very similar reasons.

This reflection can be most clearly seen in the title of the composition telling that each of us has to make choices. Otherwise we cannot function and grow as humans. Each choice allows for more choices and disables other choices. A group of choices already makes a trail with no turning back. Whether or not the trail has been built and given signposts along the way, it will lead to change, or even to another realm.

Being a grandchild of a war refugee, I conflictingly owe my entire existence to the trails of two wars. Most trails from most wars are no longer visible and that’s where monuments can become helpful. Some of the more visibile trails are familiar to us, easy or difficult, while some are unsettling yet real – just like the sounds. Afterall, humans remain unable to completely wipe out organised violence, the most sinister trails of which extend to religion-inspired terrorism, harassment, and delusional authoritarian regimes even today.

I call the work a concertino for flute and ensemble thanks to the flute being the most individualistic instrument in this music. The composition prefers to keep the trail open-ended and not instruct on which trail to follow.
Not all the trails are straightforward and not always is the flute solo made of bravery, heroism and altruism. The flute only represents one among many. It may be the leader or it may well be being led. Oftentimes, a choice has been made for us and we can only participate. Similar choices as in Militari had to be made by many around our planet at that time.

This work has been subsidized by funding from The Finnish Music Foundation (MES).
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